I am in Seattle assisting with family stuff and preparing to attend a memorial service (Saturday) for my sister who died of complications of early-onset Alzheimer's disease.
I am not grieving much, since the shock and tears and goodbyes and losses have been many and have occurred for a long time now. I am mostly relieved that my wonderful sister and best friend is free from pain and confusion, and I am thinking of eternity. That sounds somber, but I don't mean it to be. I decided to have a little fun with the idea. So how about we share five "heavenly" things? These can me serious or funny or a combination of the two.
So here goes:
What is your idea of a heavenly (i.e. wonderful and perfect):
1. Family get-together
Everybody getting along. I've noticed a definite relationship to "turf"--we all do better when we're all away from home. This is not necessarily a bad thing; we can get together at a house on the Outer Banks or in the mountains and have a great time. Any time my niece, Jamie the Exceptional One is there, it's pretty heavenly. Add a good meal and a cool, bug-free evening on the deck or porch and life is good.
2. Song or musical piece
Hmmm. This one's harder. I'm not so much a musical person. Robin Mark's "When It's All Been Said and Done" (song's actually by Jim Cowan) makes me want to get there, and really feel like I can. I heard Beethoven's Fifth arranged for solo piano the other day, and that was pretty great, too.
This video of "When It's All Been Said and Done" is pretty cheezy but at least you can hear the song. Cute dog, too.
Chocolate. I'm currently loving Escazu (see here) but I still have a little of my Christmas treasure from Europe.
Travel might make a pretty good gift, too...
Great coffee. My Sunday treat is a fair trade Swiss Chocolate Orange that's amazing.
4. You choose whatever you like-food, pair of shoes, vacation, house, or something else. Just tell us what it is and what a heavenly version of it would be.
A WonderMutt that didn't fertilize the lawn? A giant cat that wanted to do what I wanted to do? I love animals, don't have time to have as many as I'd like (Ben won't let me have fish or a guinea pig. No fair!) but I love dogs and cats, especially cuddlesome ones. If Cletus didn't...er...excrete, he would be perfect. Also if he could life forever-little guy's getting kind of gray. A shed-free Maine Coon that didn't require a cat box would be pretty great too.
5. And for a serious moment, or what would you like your entrance into the next life to be like? What, from your vantage point now, would make Heaven "heavenly?"
Being reunited with loved ones, and getting to meet some of the people who've made me, me without knowing...people like Theresa of Avila, JRR Tolkein, CS Lewis, Eugene Peterson (not there yet and I've met him anyway, but still), Walter Wangerin (not there yet either, I don't think, and struggling with cancer. Don't hurry, Walt!), Robert Heinlein if he made the cut. Michael Williams (know him, like him, glad to spend eternity with him around). Gosh, that's a lot of men...Natalie Sleeth and Joan Chittister and Sister Miriam Schmidt, Barbara Brown Taylor and Anne LaMott...again, no hurry.