I open my eyes. Bright light with flecks of colors stream across my vision. It takes me a moment to adjust. Soon my eyes can see a beautiful blue sky with fluffy white clouds. I am on my back. My hands go out and touch the Earth, I can feel sand. I look down, warm, soft, white sand. I run it between my fingers letting each grain fall slowly. I turn my head to my left. Crystal clear ocean water gently mixing with sand. Waves are coming in and going out. Each time it seems the water gets closer and closer to me. I turn my head to the right. A tree line of huge bountiful palm trees. They hold the biggest coconuts I have ever seen. It’s warm here. It’s like a blanket straight out of the dryer laying over my skin. I carefully stand up on my feet. I am barefooted and wearing a long blue sundress. The hem of the dress is flowing around my feet in a warm breeze.
Who am I? I think to myself. Where am I? I look around. A tiny island surrounded by perfect sparkling water. I can’t remember anything about myself but I am not scared. I feel perfectly at peace. Am I dead? Why is there no one here? As if my mind was being read I saw a man step out of the tree line. He’s walking gracefully and in no hurry. He has the biggest smile on his face. He waves looking straight at me. I shyly wave back. I am curious. Who is he?
As he gets closer I notice he’s barefooted. He’s wearing light? It looks like a robe but there are no seams, no material. It’s as if it’s just a robe of solid white light. He has shiny golden brown hair. His skin is sunkissed and bronze. His eyes are piercing and gentle. As he smiles I notice laugh lines that go down into his beard. I hold out my hand to shake his, he ignores my hand. He steps forward and wraps his arms around me. I feel a word run through my head.
His mouth doesn’t move but I can hear him. I know who he is. He is God.
He pulls away holding me by my shoulders smiling. I look at him and smile back. It was involuntary. My mouth smiles on it’s own. How can you be in the presence of God and not smile? I don’t cry even though I feel I am going to. I don’t fall to my knees even though I feel they are weak. I stand there supported by the presence of Him. Sturdy. Familiar. Sure.
“Who am I? Where are we?” I ask him.
“I removed your memories temporarily so that you could enjoy your time here. I have something to show you and I didn’t want to burden you with troublesome memories.” He is still smiling. Mouth unmoving.
“Am I dead?” I asked.
I hear a laugh come from within him.
“No child you are not dead. You asked me to reveal myself to you. You asked me to show you my love for you. Today that is what I am doing.”
He lets go of my shoulder and grabs my hand. His hands are soft. I notice holes in his wrists. He leads me to the edge of the water and lets the waves crash over his feet. He walks into the water. We are both waist-deep. He let’s go and begins to swim. I follow him. The water is deep but you can see the bottom. Colorful fish swim below us. We swim a good distance. I stop. I’m not tired. In fact, I feel great I just have a question.
“Jesus, can’t you walk on water?” I am wading in the ocean face to face with God.
“Yes, but I felt like it was a nice day for a swim.” He takes his hand, cups some water and splashes me. I stare at him for a moment. He stares back. I start laughing and I can’t stop. I grab some water and throw it towards him. He takes off. He’s fast. I swim faster to catch up.
As I am swimming I hear him say, “Look”.
In Front of us is an even tinier island. Maybe 10 feet long and 10 feet wide. A perfect circle. In the middle is a small pool. The water is illuminating.
I have to climb up onto the island. It’s as if it’s floating on the top of the ocean with no bottom. The sand doesn’t move, it’s solid. He climbs up beside me. He holds his arm open pointing to the pool. I walk forward.
I am standing over it. It’s deep and shimmering full of pearls and precious gems. I notice there is no water in the pool but clear oil. It smells so good. Like a field of flowers and crushed fruit.
“Reach in and grab one,” Jesus says walking up beside me and leaning over the pool.
I bend down as my dress folds over my feet on top of the solid sand. I reach in. The oil is warm. I pull out a perfect pink pearl. I let it roll into the palm of my hand. It says in tiny white letters, “Ashley. Age 3.”.
I drop it back into the pool and dig deeper. I find a perfect red ruby. I pull it out. It reads, “Madison. Age 16.”
I reach back in and find a beautiful opal. It also reads, “Zack. Age 84.”
I put it back and as I do a stone catches my eye. It’s dazzling deep blues sparkle as the light flecks over it. I hold it up to the sun. It’s a Sapphire. How gorgeous, I think to myself. I turn it over and realize there is nothing written on it. How curious?
Jesus grabs my hand and turns me towards him. “Everything on this Island has meaning. These gems are how I see you, how I see all my children. All of you, are my most precious creations. The sand represents every thought I have had towards just you. Millions of thoughts welded into just one. ‘I love you.’ The coconuts are my memories of you. Huge and plentiful.”
He leans over and kisses my forehead. Thousands of precious memories begin to flood into my mind. When I was 3, spinning around and playing in the yard with angels. I had forgotten this memory. How sweet. Memories of me growing up. Every year getting older. Memories of me eating ice cream. Memories of my mom brushing my hair, my dad teaching me to draw. Memories of my wedding day. Memories of me laughing, smiling, dancing in the living room to worship music. Memories of me shouting in the pew at church. Memories of me in the altar.
Jesus pulls back and smiles.
“This is how I see you. This is why I love you.” Tears filled his eyes.
I hear loud thunder crack the sky and a black cloud quickly moves over the sun. Jesus steps back more and more. Rain begins to beat down, icy and cold. It hits like sharp knives. Thousands of painful memories begin to hit me. Lightning begins to strike the water all around us. I am frightened.
Memories of all the bad things I had ever done. Memories of all the painful words ever spoken to me. Memories of all the abuse I had endured and all the times I had hurt someone else. Trauma, tragedy, insecurities, and fear washed over me like a disease. I begin to feel heavy, all peace leaving my body. Finally, the rain stopped and the clouds begin to clear. I look up at Jesus and he looks at me, sad.
With a stern voice, he declares, “Those memories do NOT belong to me. I threw them as far as this East is to the West. It’s you who chooses to be defined by these things, but they are not mine. I do not see those. They belong solely to you.”
I drop to my knees and let out an agonizing cry. “Jesus take them! Take them all. I choose to walk in your love. I choose to be defined by you only.”
Jesus bends down and grabs my face.
“You have to surrender completely. You have to give up control. You can’t hold on to any of it. If I take it you have to willingly give it away. Forever.”
I shake my head, “YES, take it! I can’t do this anymore. I can’t feel this way forever. I am tired. I am good enough and I am tired of carrying these memories. I am tired of them defining me. I choose today to walk in your love.”
Jesus grabs my hand and pulls me up. He reaches out and with one finger and touches my forehead. Bright flashes of gold hit my vision. I am going down. I can’t stop it. I am falling, or am I flying? I hear Jesus say, “It is done.” I fall into the pool of pearls. Oil is seeping over me, warm and sweet. As I fall deeper into the pool I began to hear an alarm.
I open my eyes. I’m in my room on my back. I look over and see my alarm going off. I grab it and cut it off. I lay there a minute wishing it wasn’t just a dream. How wonderful that was. I grab the covers and pull my legs over to the side of the bed. I get up and walk to my closet grabbing my robe. If only that dream was real I think to myself. As I am walking to the kitchen I stuff my hands into my robe pockets. It is cold in my home. As I reach into my pocket I feel something heavy and smooth. I pull it out and the most beautiful Sapphire catches my eyes. I flip it over in my hand, there are tiny white letters on it. My legs give out and I hit the ground. My face goes towards the floor and I begin to sob uncontrollably. It reads, “Megan. Age 26.”.
Happy Valentine’s Day! Jesus loves you. Follow my blog for more.
Image and story copyright to Megan Alder. 2020.
If you are interested in my children’s book the link is down below. Thank you for supporting new Authors and Artists! http://mybook.to/Adventuresofpip