Excerpt #9 – Volcanoes, Butterflies & Jesus – Shelley Zwingli

(Continued from Excerpt #8)

I reach under my pillow and find my rosary once more. I start to pray it again in silence. I know Trent needs some sleep, his work day is fast approaching and I have kept him awake for most of the night. I can’t tell him everything that’s happening to me. It’s not fair for me to expect him to understand it all. I don’t understand it. I don’t want to overwhelm him, even though I’m sure I already have. I lay here wondering if I’m going crazy, and just as quickly as that thought enters my mind the angels start to sing again. I now know that I’m not going crazy, this is all so beautiful and holy. I know it comes from our loving God. I’m just struggling with how is it’s possible for me to be in this physical world and also be experiencing the spiritual realm, all at the same time.

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Excerpt Post #8 – Volcanoes, Butterflies & Jesus – Shelley Zwingli

(Continued from Excerpt #7)

I have never been so sad and felt so alone. I’m very thankful to have Trent and Branelle helping me through this ordeal but unfortunately they really don’t know what all has been taking place in my body, mind and soul. The truth is, I’m worried that if I share too much information with them they will give up on me. I keep praying for their understanding and wisdom. I need their support and help more than ever.

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Excerpt Post #7 – Volcanoes, Butterflies & Jesus – Shelley Zwingli

(Continued from Excerpt #6)

African Lady Vision

I close my eyes again and within seconds another vision opens up in my mind. These visions are like movie clips. Some of them are in color and others are in black and white. This vision starts with a middle-aged woman standing in front of me; she has dark skin. She is possibly of African descent. She has a cream colored linen scarf wrapped tightly around her head; she’s also wearing a long cream colored linen gown. In her arms she’s holding a new-born baby.Blog - Mother & Baby The baby is wrapped up tight in a blanket. She is a very good woman, her beautiful smile is contagious. She hands me the baby. I’m feeling extremely happy to be receiving this baby. Right at this moment I feel this baby has a connection to me. However, I don’t recognize the woman.  Even though this scene is very uplifting, I need it to stop. I’m trying to settle my mind but these visions seem to have no end. I open my eyes to stop the spiritual connection. I’m getting tired and more frustrated with every minute that ticks by. Continue reading

Excerpt Post #5 – Volcanoes, Butterflies & Jesus – Shelley Zwingli

Excerpt Post #5 – Volcanoes, Butterflies & Jesus – Shelley Zwingli

(Continued from Excerpt Post #4)

Awake and fully aware

 

Hearing the heavenly choir has sent my physical mind into despair. At the same time my spiritual soul is connecting to a loving power that is trying to calm all my fears. In this very moment I am of sound mind and I’m consciously aware of all my surroundings. I am fully awake. The only medication that I’ve been on for the past few days is an anti-biotic. I’m absolutely sure it doesn’t have these side effects. I’m physically alive but also experiencing the heavenly realm. The only way I can deal with this battle that is raging within me is to pray. I know that I must ask for help from God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit. I need to ask for God’s will to be done. I need to put my will aside. Whatever happens to me now is all a part of God’s divine plan for me.

The Nativity by Federigo Barocci

The Nativity – Federigo Barocci

I will also turn to our heavenly mother, the Queen of Heaven. Mary is the true mother of us all; she knows our pain. She watched her son Jesus, the Son and Savior of mankind, hang and die on the cross. What a heart break for a mother to witness. She is the purest of pure and God holds her in very high regard.  I will ask Mother Mary to intercede and pray for me as well. I will pray the rosary and plead for guidance and wisdom from our Heavenly Father. The Creator  had chosen Mary many years ago to deliver our Saviour to the world. God knew she was a faithful servant. I now need her prayers to help me through this struggle.

Trent and I are lying side by side in bed holding hands. We pray the rosary together. We pray for my healing and for me to be allowed to stay here on Earth a while longer. I’m extremely distraught and I know that Trent is very worried about what all has been taking place. When we finish the rosary he snuggles up to me and I try once again to settle down.

 

The waking visions start…

1:30 AM, Thursday, April 4, 2013

I glance at the clock it’s now 1:30 AM. I have been in bed for about three hours and have not been able to sleep. I’m still very worried about what will happen to my family if I should pass. We are all dying—every day we are one day closer to our earthly death. This reality doesn’t seem to bother us on a daily basis until an incident brings our mortality to the forefront.  I’m facing this reality right now; I can hardly deal with this certainty. How can I be here in this physical form and be hearing heavenly music?  This almost seems impossible.

Young Boy Vision

I try to sleep again and before I know what’s happening to me a vision enters my mind. This vision is much different than my NDE while in ICU at the Victoria Hospital. I was sleeping during my NDE; this new vision has appeared in my mind while I’m still awake.Blog - Young Boy (a) My eyes are closed but my mind has been opened to see a picture. It’s similar to a dream but much clearer, plus its happening while I’m fully awake. In my mind I’m being shown a picture of an eight to 10-year-old boy. He’s smiling a bright, beautiful smile. He has big eyes and chin length blonde curly hair. He is surrounded by friends in the picture. The focus is on him and this whole scene is in color. He looks familiar to me but I’m not sure who he is.

Once again I wake Trent and explain to him what has just happened. I feel horrible waking him but I’m becoming more and more distraught. I can’t seem to stop what’s happening to me. I’m an emotional wreck. I’m wondering when this unfathomable experience will end. I’m tired and wanting to sleep but every time I close my eyes and try to relax the spiritual realm makes another connection with me. I’m exhausted; almost running out of tears. Through all this turmoil Trent remains calm.

(Continued in Excerpt Post #6)

Ask, Listen and be Watchful,

Shelley Transparent Signature

A Brief Chat with Jesus (Part I): Guest Post


Intro from Shelley:
Part of our journey while we’re here on Earth is to be of service to others. At some point in our lives a profound spiritual awakening may take place. There’s a story in each one of us that has us opening up to the possibility of a Greater Power’s existence.

Suzanne Paschall, my editor/publisher and author of The Pink Notebook Project, recently shared with me a life altering, soul awakening event, and I asked her if she would put pen to paper to also share the story with you. The next two blog postings will help us open up to the beautiful reality of how God works. The Creator lovingly sends signs to us in our darkest moments. We are being guided and encouraged to stay on the path of life which will give us the most soulful growth.

I would like to thank Suzanne for sharing her Divine experience, A Brief Chat with Jesus. I know these posts will open up a much-needed connection for some of my readers.  I also want to invite you to share a piece of your story. You can do so through the Your Stories tab on my website.  It is through sharing parts of our life’s journey we aid in healing ourselves and each other. We are all here to grow in love and compassion. We are all teacher and student in this miraculous incarnation.

Ask, Listen and be Watchful,

Shelley

A Brief Chat with Jesus  (Part I) 

LucidDreamingI’ve always been a dreamer. I mean that literally. I’m what’s referred to in dream literature as a recaller, meaning I often remember quite a lot of detail about many dreams, long after I have them. Over the years I’ve collected books on dream research, and at one point in my life tried to practice lucid dreaming.

My dreams have been prescient (foretelling); recurring or, as I now understand, direct connections with other figures, like what I believe happened to  me when I had the same dream every Good Friday night for three years in a row.

My relationship with God, or my Higher Power, has been nebulous all my life. Though I was raised in the Lutheran faith, with the support of a fine preacher who shepherded me through Catechism, I fell away from the Church later in life for some very specific reasons. Over time, I felt like the only “higher power” I could rely on was me, and wow, I worked that martyrdom hard for a few decades.

I don’t recall what exactly was happening in my life when the recurring Jesus dream started some 15 years ago, or when it stopped recurring a few years later. But the details of it have never left me, and have left me with unanswered questions.

The dream

The dream begins with me walking on a narrow dirt path that winds along the edge of a very high cliff. Beyond the cliff to my right I can see a massive expanse of ocean. The horizon is dark and changing, a storm is brewing. But I don’t feel any sense of temperature, of cold or heat. I know I am dreaming. I don’t feel any emotions, except a little curiosity as I advance slowly on this path, taking care not to trip on the occasional stones that appear in the path.
To the left of the path is a wide thatch of wild meadow. The growth is patchy and scraggly; it’s not a tended crop field; nor a garden. The area seems deserted, and there is a forest off in the extreme distance left and forward.
I feel the wind pick up, freshen off the ocean, and now I do feel temperature—a tinge of cool, moist air—as I approach a bend in the path that slowly rises up. I round the corner, and my tread become uncontrollably leaden. It’s as if I’m being compelled by some greater force to slow my steps. I climb up the rise and a figure slowly comes into view.
It’s a man sitting quietly on a rock on a small plateau at the cliff’s edge. There are numerous boulder-like stones strewn at this spot. The man is sitting calmly, clearly waiting for someone to approach. I assume it’s me, because I’m the only other person here. I approach him very slowly, and more details come into view. He’s wearing a long white robe, with a rope belt tied casually at his side. He has long brown wavy hair. His hands are in his lap. He’s facing away from the ocean, looking directly at me. He is neither smiling nor scowling. His face is completely passive, expressionless, except for his brown eyes that look blandly at me. He is otherwise as motionless as a statue.
He doesn’t speak, but seems to be waiting for me to ask a question. I don’t know how I know this, but I do. However, I have no idea what is the question I’m supposed to ask.
I stop in front of him, perhaps a foot away. We look at each other. For some reason, I reach out with my hand to touch his lips. (I have no idea why I do this.) His reaction is strange, and becomes the first of my questions that I have after the dream. He moves his hand up quickly to push my hand away. His face doesn’t change, but it clearly appears to be a gesture of rebuff.
I feel confusion bloom on my face, but I can’t speak. Then he does, and he says, quite clearly but without emotion, “You cannot discern the lips of an angel.”

It reverberates inside me, repeating and repeating. I continue to look at him. I glance over at the ocean, at the approaching weather, and wonder why I’m here, and what I’m supposed to be learning. I feel quite strongly that he is Jesus, and that this is a lesson. That I’ve been brought to this precipice for a reason, and that unlike a dream, this appears to be a direct communication with this figure, executed through a sleep-state. Again, I don’t know how I know this, but I most emphatically do. I have years and years of attentive dream experience to compare this to, and this encounter stands unique.

This is where the dream-state experience ends, and I wake up. I then experience this again on the next Good Friday and I have this dream for several years—on this night and only on this night.
I never forget it, it never changes…and I never figure out the central questions that stay with me to this day.

(Continued in Part II – Unanswered Questions)

Spiritually Woven – The Pink Notebook

The timing of events in our lives couldn’t be woven more perfectly. We fall into each other’s lives at the exact moment we are required to; there are no mistakes when we allow the universe to take charge. This perfect timing is set in motion once we send a request out to the universe, and at that time we may not have even realized that we’ve made a request for help. What I’ve come to recognize, however, is the universe knows us better than we know ourselves. The universe knows our true soul’s desire and it acts on our appeal.

Blog - Woven PictureMy perfect weaving started from the moment of my conception, and throughout every stage of my life, the right people have entered the scene. It is only in the past couple of years that I’ve figured out just how perfectly intertwined our lives are with one another. I have also learned to let go and allow the Divine to take charge of the wheel, thereby allowing people that have been placed on my path to add extreme value to my journey. When we embrace our life path and place our controlling ego aside, we give the universe the permission to guide us into unfathomable spiritual growth.

Immediately after my near death experience (NDE), I surrendered to controlling my life. The NDE awoke in me the trusting quality that is required to fully let go and believe in a loving Creator that only wants the best for me and all of creation. I also started noticing all the little things in life were truly the big things in life. I started paying very close attention to signs from above, signs that I generally would of sloughed off as just a coincidence.

Over time, I’ve learned that there are numerous ways the Creator is able to gain our attention. Some of these include repetitive numbers, words in a song, smells, thoughts that won’t go away, people that we keep running into, feathers on our path, and coins in very odd places. I consider these coincidences as ways the universe knocks on our door.

Meaningful connections

One so called repetitive incident for me started with my good friend, Arlene Shields. In the summer of 2013, I had shared my NDE with Arlene and she immediately knew of an editor/publisher that could help me share my story. Arlene repeatedly mentioned Suzanne’s name to me over a course of about six months, and would not let me rest until she knew I had booked and appointment with her. Arlene was definitely instrumental in guiding me to my editor/publisher, Suzanne Paschall, and ultimately the conduit for the direction I needed to take to help create my writing skills. At the time I had no idea how much of an impact Suzanne would have in my life. The surprise for both Suzanne and I was that we actually needed each other at that exact time in our lives. Arlene helped ignite a fire in each of us.

In the fall of 2013, upon meeting Suzanne, I realized that she was the only person that I could fully trust with my NDE story. We made an instant connection, and I shared all kinds of details of my life with her and she reciprocated. Suzanne had told me that she had just starting working with a nun by the name of Sister Val Leibel who was writing a book which had Suzanne rethinking her take on God. The name “Sister Val” immediately had me sitting up in my chair. We had a Sister by the name of “Val” in Melfort many years ago. Suzanne confirmed that this was the same woman. Was this another coincidence? I think NOT!

I was the second person to enter Suzanne’s life in a matter of a few months, and I also was bringing God and our spirituality to the forefront. These two little coincidences (Sister Val and myself) were a sign for Suzanne to open up to the possibility that God didn’t just reside in church, and that being upset with God over a man-made church doctrine was not going to help her move forward.

The Creator that I gave control to is all loving and forgiving. Mankind tends to make all kinds of rules and regulations. Many of these laws are not of God and in turn it becomes very easy for us to judge each other because of these man-made rules.  In effect, it is as if we have taken the role of playing God, whom we are not, when we really should be focusing on our own personal connectedness with the Divine.

Blog - Pink NotebookComing home to God

Our Creator is a loving maker that is trying to bring Suzanne back underneath the proverbial wing.  She had been asking for help and within the next couple years her loving Maker would show her the true meaning of her existence. One must only ask for help and it shall be granted.

With the universe in total control of Suzanne’s request, Sister Val, Arlene and myself have all aided her into a new chapter of life. She has embarked on a writing journey that is far overdue. She has been an instrument in many authors’ success and now it is her turn. Suzanne is putting her knowledge of writing and editing to use for her own soul’s growth. She has learned that life isn’t only about serving others; it must also be about helping herself.

Please check out my dear friend Suzanne’s new site, The Pink Notebook Project. She is taking “asking the universe” to a much greater level, and following her blog will most definitely warm your heart and help your soul soar.

Ask, Listen and be Watchful,

Shelley Transparent Signature

 

Excerpt Post #3 – Volcanoes, Butterflies & Jesus – Shelley Zwingli

Excerpt Post #3 – Volcanoes, Butterflies & Jesus – Shelley Zwingli

(Continued from Excerpt Post #2)

9:00 PM, Wednesday, April 3, 2013, Zwingli Farm

Blog - Water dropletBranelle sits with her back towards me in the washroom. She’s my safety net. I step into the warm shower and instantly feel a different sort of water hitting my skin. This water feels like living water, it seems to have life within it. I glance down at my body and watch the water trickle down my skin. It’s creating little pathways that look like river streams of color. I feel every drop of water land and it feels intensely refreshing. I have also observed that every water droplet is holding a little rainbow within its self. All these water droplets are awake with a flickering brilliance of color. I don’t mind this new-found awakening; I’m just struggling with how my senses seem to be overloaded with this super-clarity of everything in sight. This sensory awareness doesn’t seem to be letting up…if anything, it’s becoming more intense.

I was just about to share what I have observed in the water with Branelle, when I stop myself. I don’t want to burden my family with all of these details; the NDE was almost too much for them to handle.  I decide to keep some of these realizations to myself. I know deep down that something has drastically changed within me. I will just try to sort through it on my own. Maybe once I get a good night’s sleep under my belt I will wake to a new day, my normal life will resume and I will feel like my old self again.

Branelle and I head upstairs after my shower. I’m finding it very difficult to climb this many stairs. It was just 10 days ago when I was running up and down these levels without any effort. Now it’s taking a great deal of energy, and I don’t have much get up and go. I will just keep telling myself that tomorrow will be a better day. Every day I have made progress and I will keep thinking positively.

10:30 PM – Will the Morning Come?

Trent, Branelle and I visit for a few more minutes in the living room. It’s been a long day for all of us. Trent gets up and gives both of his girls a kiss, he then heads upstairs to bed. Branelle and I stay up for a few more minutes. I share with her how scared I am of going to sleep. I’m worried that I might not wake up in the morning.

Blog - Excerpt #3What I have seen is far too real. I have been shown a glimpse of the afterworld and even though I love where I’m headed when I pass I still don’t want to leave my family yet. I also haven’t been very truthful with Trent and Branelle when it comes to how my body has changed since the near death experience. I haven’t told them everything that I’m feeling and visually seeing. I don’t want to freak them out. I will just keep praying privately for some help and guidance. Hopefully all this will pass and I will be okay.

Branelle and I head upstairs for bed as well; I tuck her in and ask her to pray for my continued healing. I know that God hears our prayers and answers them all. I also realize that the answers may not be the answers that we want. The Maker is in control of our destiny. I just hope that this is not the end of my life here on Earth. I hope there are many more pages to my life story. I kiss my girl goodnight and head down the hall to our master bedroom.

(To be continued – Excerpt Post #4)

Ask, Listen and be Watchful

Shelley Transparent Signature

Excerpt Post #1: Volcanoes, Butterflies & Jesus – Shelley Zwingli

4:00 PM, Wednesday, April 3, 2013 – Victoria Hospital, Prince Albert, Saskatchewan

Branelle and I wait patiently for some news on my discharge.Blog Pic Excerpt VB&J I share with her what had happened to me earlier that afternoon. The near death experience has shaken me up. The reality of what I saw has her concerned, too. Branelle knows that I would only speak the truth. I want to go home more than ever now, because if I’m still dying I don’t want to die in the hospital. I can’t share the near death experience with the staff because I believe they will never discharge me after hearing about my experience. They may even think that I’m mentally unstable, which I know I’m not.

5:30 PM

The doctor walks into my room. He and the head nurse have decided to let me go home. He makes me promise that I will consume 2000 calories daily until my weight is back to normal. I want to go home to heal, so I give him my word. I thank him for all that he has done for me; he wishes me a speedy recovery. I hold back the tears as he walks out of the room. He’s an amazing doctor. I owe my life to him and his colleagues.

I call Trent to share my good news; he had just been leaving our house to head to Prince Albert to stay with me. Over the next 30 minutes Branelle and I gather up my belongings and pick up an antibiotic from the pharmacy and then we are homeward bound. What a great feeling! I’m silently hoping with any luck a good night’s sleep will help restore my body to its normal state.

Ever since I crossed over I’ve noticed my senses have been heightened. Upon leaving the hospital and going outside, this is even more noticeable. My sight has never been so clear, colors are extremely vibrant and objects are more defined than before my NDE. I almost feel as though I’ve had corrective eye surgery. This change in vision has me somewhat concerned about my future–my heightened awareness has me very nervous.  My hearing has also changed; all noises seem to be intensely loud. On a scale from 1-10, with 1 being quiet and 10 being extremely loud, my scale has increased by about five points. This audible heightening is not enjoyable, I feel as though the people around me are almost yelling when they talk. I find myself turning down the volume on the car radio, even though Branelle says it’s not at all loud.

We are halfway home when our trip is interrupted by a phone call. Brennon has called me from Costa Rica and it‘s great to hear his voice. I share with him a very short version of my NDE, and tell him that I’ll share more detail with him when he returns from his holiday. I don’t want to alarm him.

Branelle now makes the final turn off the highway onto our gravel road. We are getting closer to home and I’m hoping that my release from the hospital was the right decision. I don’t want to discuss with her how I’m feeling. This heightened state of awareness has me panicking inwardly. I keep my thoughts to myself; I don’t want to cause her any extra stress.

Blog Picture - Crisp PrairieAs we head north down our country road I glance across the prairie landscape and wherever my eyes travel I get a very defined image. I’m witnessing a country scene that I’ve never really noticed before. I have lived down this country road for almost 30 years and today the hills, trees, and farmyards have more detail than I remember. In every direction I look I see things that I’ve missed in the past. I’m also noticing my entire body feels different. I feel as though a part of my body is missing, but in a good way– somewhat carefree, I have a floating sensation. I know that my body is still physically alive and grounded in this car seat but the rest of my being, along with my senses, seems to be weightless. The colors and scenery that I’m noticing are much more appealing than ever before. I’m enjoying the crisp hues that clothe this early spring landscape.

Once again I reach over and turn down the radio; I don’t want my thoughts to have to compete with this unnecessary noise. My body is wound up and it’s craving silence at this very moment. I think back to the experience that just happened a few hours ago. I begin to silently pray to God for some help and understanding. I’m pleading for a little more time here on Earth. As Branelle and I pull the car into our yard a thought enters my mind:  Will I live through the night, or will God take me home? I know perfectly well that my body is not in a fully recovered state, and with my senses all on high alert I’m struggling to make sense of this mystifying body-soul experience. I know without a doubt that my soul has just returned from heaven and even though I have loved what I was shown I’m still very fearful of leaving my family behind if I am to pass away in the next few days.

(Continued in Excerpt Post #2)

Ask, Listen and be Watchful

Shelley Transparent Signature

Om – I Will Hold You

May 2013 – The Zwingli Farm

Proof Of HeavenI placed the book down on the counter in front of me and I let the tears fall. Brennon, our son, has been  home visiting for a couple days. He walks over, gives me a kiss on the cheek and gently rubs my back. My emotions have been like a roller coaster for the past month. I’m still struggling with what I’ve been shown and I’m so glad my family is supporting me through this life-altering experience. I’m feeling absolutely overwhelmed and I’m searching for the answers to where I was, what it all means and what I should be doing with what I’ve learned.

I have just had an aha moment linked to a book I started reading a couple days ago. The book is called Proof of Heaven written by Eben Alexander, M.D. The near death experience (NDE) I had has me reaching for all kinds of resources to read about the afterlife as I try to figure out what exactly happened to me.  In Proof of Heaven, the author mentions the term “Om” in place of the name God or Creator. This word alone has hit me like a ton of bricks.

Ever since I’ve crossed over I’ve been experiencing a strange but beautiful sensation while falling asleep at night. Just before my body becomes totally relaxed, and even before I’m sound asleep, I feel myself gently lift off the bed and a soft rocking motion begins. It’s at this stage of relaxation/sleep that I speak out loud the word “Om.” I don’t remember anything that happens after I have said this. I wake the next morning after having an amazing sleep and I’m somewhat puzzled as to why I keep saying “Om.”  Why am I saying this word on the cusp of sleep?

I have heard the word referred to during yoga sessions. I do realize that it’s a mantra that helps people connect to their inner loving source during meditation. I’m just not sure why it’s coming out of my mouth just as I fall into the unconscious state of sleep. This has been happening every night for the past month. I asked my husband, Trent, if he hears me say something just before I fall asleep. He says he does, but he’s just not sure of the word that I’m saying. He says that I’m saying it very quietly and he can’t make it out. I, however, do know the word I’m speaking and before reading Eben Alexander’s explanation I was unsure of what it could mean to me.

I glance down at the book and realize that Eben has just explained another meaning of this word to me, and I’m blown away. Tears continue to run down my cheek because the explanation is almost more than I can grasp. I now realize that I’m softly calling our Creator’s name as I’m falling asleep. I realize how beautiful it is that my soul, just at the onset of sleep, is acknowledging its maker. My soul is very much aware of what I’m doing but my physical body doesn’t have a clue why this is occurring.

Blog - Heavenly HandI think back to the previous night when I whispered Om ; at the time I was hardly conscience enough to realize it. I also understand now that the rocking motion that I’m feeling as I drift off to sleep is Om holding me. I think back to a spiritual picture my parents had hanging in their home. The following verse was inscribed over Gods hands in this picture: “I will hold you in the palm of my hands.” I now know beyond a shadow of a doubt – this is what I’ve been experiencing. An absolute peace comes over me and I wipe my tears away.

This is the first time Brennon has seen me since my surgery. He’s home for a weeklong visit. Trent and I love the time he spends with us. Over the course of a week he has listened to the entire NDE, and I have explained to him everything that has happened to me. It’s been a real eye opener for all of us.

I know over the course of the next few weeks, months and years Om will continue to share the secrets of the universe with me. I have been crying tears of joy for the past few weeks; I’ve been given the chance to learn more about this life we’re living. I’m more than grateful for this favourable outcome.

I still have the opportunity to hold my babies and sleep beside my husband. I do also realize that when their time comes and they are called home, they will be held in the palm of Om’s hands, and the spirits on the other side will welcome their arrival with unconditional love. We need to find solace in knowing that as we mourn the loss of a loved one on earth, heaven and all the angels will be cheering on their arrival.

Ask, listen and be watchful,

Shelley Transparent Signature

Summer 2012 – Heavenly Creatures (Part II)

(Continued from Summer 2012 – Heavenly Creatures)

The butterfly visits were how our summer began but that wasn’t how it ended. We had many visitors over the summer—butterflies, hummingbirds, rabbits and dragonflies. The more we believed in what we were witnessing, the more nature seemed to open up the heavenly gates to a silent conversation between us.

The summer of 2012 was also a summer that I vowed to become more active. Our winters in Canada are very long and chilly, so I needed to make the most out of the short summer season (July & August) that we have. I promised myself that I was going to go for a run through the cabins three to five days a week. Little did my husband Trent realize that I had also signed him up for the same activity; I will say, though, he was a good sport about it! I find it much easier to exercise when there’s a buddy alongside me. So, Trent and I would usually head out for our 30-minute run at about 9:00 a.m. every other morning.

The month of August was upon us and summer was quickly slipping by. Our final run was one we will both remember fondly. It was a sunny day and the temperature hadn’t broken 20 degrees Celsius yet. We headed north down the road in front of our cabin and then decided to take the quieter road behind the cabins that is usually less travelled but this morning was the exception.   As we left the view of the cabins behind there was an encounter over which I’m still in awe.

Dragonfly LandscapeNature has a way of showing us that heaven does sometimes come down to earth. As we ran down the back road we noticed the sun’s rays hitting the dewy leaves on the trees and adding a shimmer to the wet grass in the ditch. With every step Trent and I took, a host of dragonflies would lift up out of the wet grass. There were hundreds if not thousands of them. We kept running and they kept billowing up out of the lush vegetation. As I looked up ahead of us, I noticed the sunlight was also dancing off of their wings with an almost angelic aura. After about 30 seconds into this scene I glanced over at Trent and said, I’m pretty sure this is what heaven looks like. They kept rising from the grass and we kept running. It was breathtaking and oh, so holy.

This spiritual experience lasted a good 10 minutes on that quiet back road. If we would’ve remained on the path in front of the cabins that we normally took, we would have missed the whole heavenly show. God has a way of getting our attention, and the use of nature is definitely in the Creators goody bag. Taking the time to slow down and quiet our minds helps us incredibly when it comes to connecting with God and the spiritual world. There are all kinds of signs on our path, and when we quiet ourselves a new appreciation and awareness will be revealed.

I had shared the story about the dragonfly run with a couple of women from my hometown a while back. It’s through story sharing that we can connect spiritually with each other. When we allow ourselves to become vulnerable and we take risks, we move forward with spiritual growth. The sharing of an intimate experience with people you don’t know really well is sometimes dicey. Since my NDE, however, I’ve learned to take more chances with whom I share these divine encounters with; nothing ventured, nothing gained. When I take a look back to the day I shared the story with them none of us would have realized how impactful this story would become.

A couple months later, just shortly after my father passed away, I received a small package in the mail. Along with the sympathy card, the one woman sent me a beautiful dragonfly necklace. This loving gesture shows how the spirit within us is pure and unconditional; taking the time to connect with someone who mourns is worth more than we can imagine. This woman is not a close friend but an acquaintance, which still didn’t stop her from helping me in my time of sorrow.

My challenge to you is to reach out to people in need. Don’t just stay on the path that’s straight and easy; take a chance and head down that road less travelled and challenge yourself to go beyond your comfort zone. By stepping off the beaten path, we are giving our soul a chance to grow and flourish. We are on earth to grow spiritually and to help each other out. One of the ways we can grow and complete part of our life’s directive is to reach out to others in need.  Random acts of kindness can only have a positive effect on the world. We may not change the world by one act of kindness but by changing ourselves in a positive manner and reaching out to those in need we will be planting the same seed within them and in turn those loving gestures will multiply.

I know that heaven joined Trent and I on our run that morning; there is no way to deny it. It was a taste of the world to come. There is an awe-inspiring beauty that awaits our souls return, and we all have the option while we’re here to embrace it and share our love, unconditionally.

Ask, listen and be watchful

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