Sunday, February 24, 2008

Letting You In

I don't like to share this sort of thing. I feel pretty sheepish about it. But I mentioned it to a friend this week, and she encouraged me to share it at church this morning, which I did. I didn't want to share it because I don't want to be labeled as someone who dreams dreams. But the truth is that I did have this dream. My pastor says being labeled as someone who "dreams dreams" isn't necessarily bad. It's a blessing. So maybe it will bless you too.

One of my college professors kind of adopted me as his granddaughter. His name was C.W. Smith, and we all called him C-dub. C.W. took me to the opera several times, my friends and I were always at his house for dinner, he’s responsible for most of my theological views, we kept in touch after college, and he officiated at our wedding when Jeff and I got married.

Five years ago, after a four-year battle against prostate cancer, he died.

On the day he died, I had a dream. I dreamed I was at his bedside, saying goodbye, with the rest of us who had been so close to him in college.

In my dream, I was there at the moment he died. I watched his soul leave his body and shoot up through the air, fast, like he was being snatched away from this life.

And as he left, he bubbled over with laughter that rang out across the sky. The loudest, most amazing, all-encompassing laugh I have ever heard. Sheer joy. I will never forget the sound of that laugh.

I woke from my dream with his laughter still ringing in my ears. And I knew he was gone.

I wasn’t surprised at all when I got the call later that day. I asked what time he had died.

The minute he died was the minute I woke from my dream.

I cannot wait to get to heaven and find out just exactly what he was laughing about. Whatever it was he saw, whatever it was he felt, whatever it was he suddenly KNEW at that moment… caused him to burst out into an unforgettable expression of overwhelming joy.

Someday, the same thing is going to happen to me. Before God’s throne, I will burst forth into unquenchable laughter.