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 Main Index

Chapters
 Editor's Note
 Preparations
 My Trip
 My Arrival
 The Stench & Flames
 The Cigarette Man
 The Unpersuaded
 The Valley
 The Rich Man
 The Righteous Ones
 The Island
 The Angels
 Homeward
 Reflections

 The Bible & Hell

Homeward

I return to Heaven after days or months - or has it been years? I do not know, and I don't even know if such a question is relevant - but however long I have been away, it has been far too long.

To see, as the dim light grows brighter, the shores of Heaven, is a delight to my soul. In Hell I could just look longingly back at the dim and distant light, but as I approach it I am basking in its vivid colors. While Hell had been a dreary gray, tinged at times with a few faded colors from among those colors we knew on earth, the warm and cool colors of Heaven gladden my heart. The golden and green, the orange and apple red, the whole spectrum of colors beyond that tiny band between red and violet that alone we thought so beautiful on earth!

I write as I travel, and though on this journey my heart longs to be home, and I fear I will be distracted, I shall take this opportunity of describing the return.

The angel who is returning me does not speak, so I have ample opportunity to look about me as we travel. We left - I am tempted, from my earthly days, to say "took off" - in one of the more attractive parts of Hell, what might at one time have been a garden on earth, but now was a muddy green-gray shadow of itself. The angel, glorious though all angels are, barely shown of Heaven. His clothing, though white, was a plain white. His face, though shining, shined softly.

I was glad to see the landscape of Hell begin to disappear in the distance, and as we flew the breath of Heaven begin to waft softly and sweetly in my face.

I looked up, though I am hesitant in calling any direction in this never-never land "up" or "down." But as we passed out of the drabness I noticed points of light begin to blink on where before there was just the blank gray-black of the eternal hellish night. Stars! I had almost forgotten how much I loved them. And then a great, silent, comet! It's white tail spread like a peacock's over half the glittering sky, filled with all the constellations of the new heavens.

You may imagine from this that I was traveling through what we used to call "space" when on earth, but I am not at all sure that this is what it was. It didn't feel as if we were under this wonderful sky or within it, but as if we were passing it as a train passes a barn at the side of the tracks.

And the warmth of Heaven grows greater, and the smells! Oh my! When you come out of the plainness of Hell you notice every little nuance. The cleanness. The scent of which the freshness after a rain was only a dim foreshadowing. The sweetness of which a cool, fresh plum is the barest hint. Before I got to Heaven, I never imagined that righteousness and mercy and justice were so real you could smell them. Ah, strawberries and roses, eat your hearts out. And now I smell them again. Oh, my heart overflows with joy! And so bright! Everything is so bright. Like the warm sun dancing on the water of a crystal lake.

I noticed as well as we approach Heaven that my white-robed angel is taking on the hues of Heaven, warming to and reflecting the colors. He has become golden, glinting with all the colors of the spectrum. I had thought red and blue and orange beautiful. Oh how much more wonderful they are, like apples of gold in settings of silver, when dancing and glittering together with the full spectrum. Oh, how I would have laughed on earth if someone had told me radio waves were such a beautiful color. How technical and unspiritual it would have sounded. And yet I laugh now, as well, but out of pure pleasure.

All the same emotions meet me as I approach Heaven this second time as engulfed me when I first entered. The love and glory of God, warm and yet somehow cool and refreshing, reaching out and embracing me. It is home ahead! How those in Hell could turn from this I still cannot really understand.

And now, to arrive! And to be with the one who truly loves me! My Lord and my God! My Savior! My Jesus. Oh, how I have missed You! I am so thrilled to be back home. The home I always longed for on earth, and longed for even more in Hell where, Oh, God, by your graciousness you shaded the inhabitants from almost all of your glory, but for me, who can only thrive in your presence, it was cold starvation. Oh what a shaft of warm sunlight it is to approach home! Like the first warm beams of spring breaking through the snow and ice of winter! My face turns to You and now, once again, I am filled with joy!

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© Copyright 2003 Brad Haugaard