I wonder , as I’m sure many do , what really is waiting on the other side ? I know it will be glorious. But as I watch my fathers decline in this world I can not but imagine what his entry into the next will be like.
Of course he will see his mother and father and brother and sister. Beyond that though , my thoughts run wild. My father was a marathon runner. His running career started in the sixties before anyone else ran. In fact , he was frequently stopped by the sheriff and questioned as to why he was running. Now due to his Parkinson’s he can’t even walk. So one thing I’m sure of is he will be running.
He had a sister who spent her life confined to a wheelchair. She never walked and her speech was such that only family members knew what she was saying. I believe that she will run with my father , hair flying , laughing and singing all the way.
I heard a story told by a young girl , maybe six years old , who was dead for nearly an hour before she miraculously came too. She described a beautiful pasture with flowers that were colors she had never seen before. Of animals of all kinds everywhere together. And of our Lord Jesus walking across the field to take her by the hand and lead her into the heavenly city. I like this version of heaven very much.
I can see my father standing there with eyes wide with youthful wonderment even though he is a grown man. I can see Jesus walking towards him with outstretched arms and a smile that radiates love. And I can see Trixie , my fathers dog , that gave him so much comfort and love through his struggle with Parkinson’s running towards him , ecstatic that he is there.
I know that growing up we were told that animals did not go to heaven because they had no soul. But now that I’m older I have a different opinion. I believe with all my heart they are there. The trusty donkeys that carried Mary into Bethlehem and Jesus into the city are there. The birds that Jesus loved so much are there. And I can see Jesus take my father by the hand and walking him into the city with Trixie ” hijacking ” through the pasture unable to contain her joy.