Betty Jackson loses her life to cancer but she gains heaven with a new job.
KEEPER OF THE GLASSES
“I want to come to you, but I can’t move. Why can’t I move? Why can’t I come to you over there?”
“Betty, you are beautiful and the time is near when we will be together again. You are not ready yet. You will be able to make the journey soon.Very soon.”
“ Thomas, I hurt so bad. I hurt all the time. Everyday and every night. Let me come to where you are?”
“No! Betty, the time is not now. Soon baby, very soon.”
“Thomas please, oh please, Thomas.”
Betty begged to her husband to take her away from her pain. As the dream faded into the ether, she found herself adrift. And then, perhaps she was not adrift. She had the same recurring dream, for the last five nights. After the second dream, she no longer had fear of dying. No fear of the unknown.
Moses Thomas Jackson Sr., Betty's husband, had come back to her.
In the dreams he calmed her fears and soothed her nerves. Her husband's visits did more than simply calm her.They had given her the utmost comfort, in knowing, he would be there on the other side. After begging to Moses for the last two nights to gain permission to crossover. Betty was denied again, and told to wait. The waiting was difficult. Compared to the pain she was in, waiting was easy. If only the pain would stop.
In the zone between asleep and awake, Betty Marie Jackson drifted and prayed. She was hounded by the pain.
The fog Induced by the drugs, keep her adrift in a different world. A foreign world without edges. It had no center. No end.
Moses Thomas Jackson Jr., known as T.J. to friends and family, sat beside his mothers bed. His brow is deeply furrowed, and his heart is aching. There was no need to call his siblings and report on his mother’s condition, it was clear, she was drawing near her end.
Betty seemed to no longer know, or show concern about who cared for her. However, that very important matter was handled by her children. There had been no need to setup a schedule for caregivers. The four children of Betty and Moses Jackson, assumed full responsibility to hold vigil over their mother.
T.J. kept a watchful eye on his mother. Lying in her bed, Betty mumbled incoherently. The knowledge that his mothers condition was beyond his control, offered no comfort. T.J. knew his mother was in pain. Occasionally, he understood a word, or a name she mumbled. The sounds she made, was nothing more than a whimper. In the dimly lit room, T.J. cried and prayed for his Mother.
T.J. was not alone in his tears and prayers. Dozens of others in the area, were also praying for Betty's release from pain and agony. Many who knew the family, and many, who had been touched by Betty, directed their prayers to the heavens constantly.
As darkness fell, T.J.'s two sisters and brother joined him. One by one, they came in and sat with T.J. and their mother. Malcolm, seated beside his mother's bed, held her small hand as gently as a feather. He would occasionally give her hand a gentle squeeze. Four days ago, Betty would squeeze back very lightly. But on this particular night, she did not respond. With tears in his eyes, and a crackle in his voice, Malcolm repeated old stories she had told him as a child. When he could speak no more, he placed his forehead on the back of his Mother's hand and cried.
Alberta, the oldest daughter tried to show her mother strength. Her ability to show that strength, was no match to the reality of pain, that her mother was going through. Alberta held Betty's other hand. Rather than talk of old times, she sang old Black Gospel Hymns. In the second chorus of,"Swing Lo Sweet Chariot" Marie entered the room.
Hearing her sister sing, she joined in. The two voices in harmony, traveled through the house. Malcolm and T.J. began to harmonize with their sisters and sang to their mother.
Betty Jackson felt herself adrift in the fog caused by the drugs. She began to hear a soft, sweet, young voice singing her favorite hymn. Then, another voice joined in.
Soon there were many other voices, singing her song. Betty looked around. In the fog she struggled to see below her. She looked above.
There Standing right in front of her, Moses Thomas Jackson Sr.. Moses held out both hands with his palms turned up. He said, “Betty, I’ve come to take you home. Are you ready?”
Betty, seeing the radiance of the light, shouted, “Yes, Lord knows I want to come home.”
“Then reach out and take my hands. I will take you home with me to be with our Lord.”
Betty placed her hands inside Moses's hands. They began to move. The more they moved through and out of the fog, the less pain she felt. Soon she felt nothing but joy and freedom, apart from her earthly body.
Moses and Betty Jackson’s children stopped singing. Their mother's body gave an unexpected jerk. She then went limp. Soon, her breathing stopped. Her children knew she was gone.
The funeral for Betty Marie Jackson was more impressive than that of a city politician.
She had no political importance that brought the people in to bid her good bye. It was because she was a genuinely beautiful and caring person. The church she attended all her life, now hosted her funeral. The church moderate in size quickly filled, leaving standing room only.
The auto procession to the cemetery stretched out for several blocks, causing traffic to be re-routed. No one in the passing cars attempted to break the line. Most knew Betty and of her passing. At the cemetery, the cars parked in orderly fashion, giving due respect to the dead.
As hymns rose and tears flowed, Betty Marie Jackson was interred. Two employees of the cemetery, stood back a respectable distance, watching. Out of hearing range of the mourners, one man stated rather matter-of-factly to the other. “This is the first time, I have ever seen, the living out number the dead in this cemetery."
.In a dimension far beyond the earthly, living world, Betty Marie Jackson was enjoying her heaven given name. She had also heard a voice say, “Well done my good and faithful servant.” Her spirit was overjoyed with the happiness of heaven.
On earth, time moved on. Moses and Betty’s children adjusted to the loss. All of them living Christian lives, they found comfort in knowing, their parents were with the Lord.
As time passed Betty looked to earth. The pain, suffering and general chaos below was more than she could bear. Approaching the Keeper, she said, “Please let me go back and help. Surely, some of those suffering needs a little help.” The keeper told her she could not return. They have to make their own choices." Betty did not give up. Repeatedly, she asked. She always received the same answer.
One day while walking the gardens in heaven, Betty received a prayer request.
She listened, “Great Grandma Jackson.” A small, delicate, clear voice of a little girl said.
“My name is Ashley Marie Watson. Mommy and Daddy gave me your middle name because you so loved the Lord. You are my Great Grand Mother. Anyway, I’m asking you, and Great-grandpa Moses to tell Jesus, we need help. Mommy and Daddy are fighting all the time. They are blaming each other, because I am blind. I know it’s not any ones fault. I love my Mommy and Daddy, I don’t want to see them break up. Please help us. Amen.”
Betty’s’ spirit became heavy from the weight of the little girls prayer. The heaviness of the child's plea was so great that it began pressing on her. “This is very serious. They are our earthly family,” Betty said to Moses. “We have to go to the Keeper, he will decide,"
Without delay they spoke to the Keeper. He agreed, the prayer needed answering. Together the three of them made their decision.
After they said all they came to say, Betty spoke up, knowing the circumstances that lay before her. She pleaded, “Please let me go and help your children."
In an instant, Betty found herself standing in the presence of Angels and Spirits of a higher power. They were all singing praises, and blessings to God. One of the Angels approached her carrying a pair of glasses. The glasses were the same that Betty had worn on earth.
“With these glasses, those you are sent to help can see you. They will fit all of Gods children. On earth you will be a spirit and a warrior for God. You cannot fight for the people. You can give advice and direction. Now go in the Lord.”
In an instant, Betty was standing beside her Great Granddaughters bed. In a whisper as soft as a butterflies wing, Betty whispered in her Great- granddaughter's ear, “Ashley, Great-grandma Betty is here.