Friday, September 7, 2012

Glimpses of Heaven

Life here on earth is not, nor is it meant to be, Paradise; in fact, it can be very tough at times.  As the saying goes, even into the most blessed of lives "a little rain must fall."  Everyone has challenges to face, obstacles to overcome, and tragedies to endure that test the strength of their faith.

But lest you think I'm down on life, be assured that just the opposite is true.  Every single day, I feel like I get glimpses of Heaven right here on earth.

Here's a for instance.  This morning, my daughter-in-law attended a gathering of MOPS (Mothers of Pre-Schoolers) that meets at a Catholic church about a half hour-drive from where she and my son live.  They are new to the area, so this was her first time joining the group.  There was on-site child care for the twins, but I went along as an emergency back-up babysitter, in case the girls got too distressed being cared for by strangers and needed to see a familiar face.  I wanted my daughter-in-law to be able to have a couple of rare hours of freedom, so that she could meet some other young moms and just enjoy herself.  By the time the twins were settled in the toddlers' room and we'd sneaked away while they were distracted by all the cool toys, it was about 9:15.  The MOPS gathering was supposed to go 'til 11:30, but I wasn't worried about being bored because I had a book and my iPhone with me.  I'd found a comfortable place to sit--not too far from the child care area--and had just checked my e-mails, when from down the hallway I heard the unmistakable sound of Kewpie crying...and crying hard.  I inched down the hall toward the room, listening as I went, and before long, I heard Bonny's familiar cry joining her sister's.  I didn't immediately rush in to get the girls, thinking they might be fine once the caregivers soothed them.  But their cries just got lustier and lustier.  By the time I got to the door and asked one of the ladies how it was going, she said, "They don't want anything to do with us.  We've tried everything, but we think they need you or their mother."  It was 9:30.

My story is getting much longer than I'd intended.  Bear with me; I'm finally getting to the part that has to do with glimpses of Heaven.  When the caregivers handed the twins over to me, one by one, they both calmed down almost immediately.  They let me strap them into their double stroller and walk them around the church parking lot (stopping every now and then to watch little "Sesame Street" and "Baby Einstein" videos on my iPhone) for the next two hours--without once squirming to get down, without so much as a peep of discontent.  They were happy and relaxed and smiley, and I was on a cloud, because all I could think was, "They really know their Grammy!"  Here is what Heaven looked like to me this morning:
Grammy's girls, in their double stroller.
As if "rescuing" these little angels and then seeing their happy little faces for the next two hours wasn't Heavenly enough, later today I got another glimpse of Heaven on earth when I took a walk around the small lake near my son and daughter-in-law's house.  On September 3--"Scenery to Die For (or Sing About!)"--I posted a picture I took during a daytime walk around this same lake, a picture that showcases the absolutely glorious scenery I was privileged to enjoy while I got my daily exercise.  Today, I took my walk at about 6:30 p.m., when the sun was starting to go down, and I got an amazing shot (if I do say so myself).
(Click on picture to enlarge.)
Isn't that view utterly spectacular?!  Between this vision of breathtaking natural beauty and the sight of the precious, smiling faces of my twin granddaughters, I got some glimpses of Heaven today for sure.  Maybe this life is not meant to resemble Paradise, but on days like today, I feel like it does.

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