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Looking Off The Edge of Heaven: And Jumping! The Story of how I went to Heaven and was sent back for a time.

22 Mar

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Whoa!.”

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I stood on the edge looking down on much of the universe. The parts I can remember are missing some very glorious and magnificent details. If I remembered too much my life would be a living Hell. I am talking about my stay in Heaven. It may have been 20 years or 200, but definitely a long residency. I will come back to this. To really understand I must start at my Earthly beginning.

I was about 7 years old. It was bedtime so I got into bed. I shared a large bed with my brother, being we were both young and space was limited in our home. I closed my eyes, but I also squinted them this time. A couple of hours instantly sped forward. So I tried to work those same eyelid muscles in an opposite way to move time backwards. It did not work. So I squinted my eyes to speed forward in time. In a single moment it was morning time. I was astounded. I had the ability to time-travel. But I shrugged it off. I ate, got dressed, and lived out the day of school including homework, chores, and following my older and bigger brother around.

That night I did not even attempt anything similar to the night before. I didn’t even give it any thought. In fact two or three nights went by. On the fourth night I was reminded when I accidentally or subconsciously flexed my eye muscles. This time I traveled backwards In time. But since I started somewhere about 1 A.M. I went back to the start of my rest roughly 10 or 15 minutes into stretching out and relaxing, my brother already dreaming.

The next night I went farther and faster forward, and each following night, further and further back fine tuning the skills of how quick and how far in either direction I cared to go. To my recollection I went as far back as a few years but only stayed for 3 or 4 minutes just to marvel. Sadly this ability faded. And what was worse was the reaction I got from a brother who thought I was just being imaginative when I asked if he noticed my absence. His response assured me there was no reason to tell my parents. If I remember right, he told them in a joking manor but I quickly denied it and played into their belief I was imagining something off a movie or book. Also spending any more time explaining was not worth the cold eggs I would be eating so I ate and got ready for the day.

I revisited this ability once or twice throughout the next couple of years but with no real seriousness as to have great tales of adventure. In fact it was not till I was a preteen that I had any experience beyond the normal realm of math, science, fistfights, and being shy towards girls. Life was pretty average. I wrapped up every year of Elementary School; My summer activities included football camp, mowing lawns for spending money, Nintendo and Sega video games and working up the nerve to call my first crush on the phone.

My brother and I moved in with our mom in the next town over. Switching schools had created its own list of social and emotional problems. Add that to the pressure of beginning middle-school and going from a small town school to a bigger city school and I was struggling and very unhappy. My mother worked hard and we had limited finances but that had always been the norm. Though losing any allowance or any other way of earning spending money was rough.

I had this dream one night in a bedroom to which I was just getting adjusted. I slept in my own bed now as me and my brother were quite grown up now. But we still shared the same room. I dreamt of the inside of a building. It was a place I had never been, I was positive. But only after what happened did I have any reason to think anything of a simple dream. The next day I had a moment of childish hope and looked up the number of a private school in the phone book. It was my best effort to deal with not being accepted in my current situation. It was very unlikely due to my mom seeking decent work, struggling to pay the rent, and worrying every night about how to feed us. But miracles happen. I don’t know how I managed it. Obviously GOD had bigger plans for my life and pitched a little help my way.

My my mother was the type to play into our childhood fantasies and pacify us by participating in our ideas. More than likely she knew the costs of a private school were impossible to pay. But, to give me some momentary joy she called the number I provided. Crazy enough, the school was private, yet small(like I grew up in) and not as expensive as most(though still a little much). So we set up a time to visit.

I was excited but still kept reality in the back of my mind especially hearing those dream killing words that every kid learns means no:

‘We’ll go look at it and then We’ll See!’, she had the nerve to say!

We will see, maybe, could be, or any combination of those coming out of the mouth of an adult always mean no. So naturally what I heard in my ears was:

‘NO! I am sorry son. I love you enough to give you some false hope. But being the loving caring provider I       am and wanting to instill in you the ability to dream and the American right to work towards those dreams we are going to keep this act (this charade) going for awhile.’

We showed up at the scheduled time. The building was modest from the outside. But when I walked through the front door, it was like being hit by a ton of bricks. It was the place, THE PLACE, I had dreamed about. From the way there was two floors, to how many rooms, right down to the 2 staircases. It was the same walls, the same look inside each room. The ceiling and the floors were an exact match to what I saw in my dream. Okay, in my dream everything was black and white.

To make a long story short, I got to attend this school. Attempting to tell my mother the shocking coincidence yet again went without success. Her mind was on bills, and GOD love her for giving me such an opportunity. How much love GOD had for me to make the impossible happen and so did she.

Living in this new town and dealing with major life changes like hormones, salvation and baptism, learning from a school curriculum that was 1 1/2 years more advanced than public school, and increasing poverty or my sensitivity to poverty was a feat in itself. The next few years got more interesting than just the start of a teenager’s journey. Even time-travel was nothing in compare. I went places, saw things, and did things that most people get to just choose one from. But these adventures were beyond time and experience.

I was a fighter-pilot, a soldier, a lover, a fighter, a family man, and yes I went to Heaven! All of this I did in the span between age 12 and 14. Like living lives within this life, if you will.

I could flood the next hundred chapters with details of heroism, Air-Force Academy, marriage, kids, every job in the book, saving lives, leading church services, running for offices, and so much more. But I will get directly to the topic that has my mind and my stomach in knots at times to this very day.

I went to Heaven. I saw Jesus. I experienced the joy of finally reaching the pinnacle of Christian existence. I was seeing with my very eyes the promises of the Holy Bible. It was bliss. Pure joy. Happiness. Everything you could imagine and more. I can’t tell you everything because I can’t remember everything. To remember would certainly be Hell. In fact, I do not completely believe in my mind. Also, a way of protecting my fragile balance. Imagine going from years, decades, centuries of living in perfect paradise and being sent back to a sinful realm of hate, let-downs, failure, pain and misery, and constant waiting to see this perfect world again. If I tell myself it never happened, it would be the worse lie one could tell. To admit it is real means I am not in a place I want to be so badly.

However, the reason I am here is fuzzy concerning the details. But one picture is clear.

I was soaking up the warm rays of Heaven. Rays of GOD’s love. No need for sunlight.

Suddenly, I stood right at the gates. I looked off the edge towards and saw the universe. It is a beautiful sight when referring to GOD’s great skill. But still, it was nothing in comparison to Heaven. Yet, I was awed. I had this feeling I was going to have to come back. Jesus spoke to me in a manner like a brother wanting to carry me home but also realizing the reality of the duty that lies ahead. He said:

‘You must go back. Your job is not yet done. I can not answer your questions about how long you will have to go back, what your exact purpose will be, or even how many more lifetimes you will have to live till you return. But be sure of this my loved one, you will be coming back and it will be for forever. I understand what you are going through. I have been to Earth myself. There is not a bitter trial you have faced yet that I did not taste on the cross. You have done well, my good servant. I have one more job for you…I can tell you this: you must tell everyone you meet that Heaven does exist. Do not worry about telling them about me. Those who receive this truth will know from whom it came. But tell it! Tell everything you can. Granted when you get back, you will have no recollection of many of these details. I would not leave you in that kind of burden. GO!!’

I hesitated, which may be a fault, just long enough to take one last look at my Lord and Saviour till i return.

‘I will accomplish it. I am sorry for the hesitation. I just wanted to say you can trust me and I love You!’, I told Him.

He responded, ‘I know. Don’t fret. (As he placed His hand on my shoulder) I love you too!’

I returned to my childhood house, a fourteen year old, and continue to live out my life to this day. I am 31 years old. I have done many more things. I have seen many more places. I have a lot of questions just like I am sure you do. But one thing I figured out, and I am sure Jesus knew it too; Obviously, I will tell everyone Heaven exists and is the place GOD’s love for all of us comes from. But, whether or not it is disobeying an order there is one thing I must do while I am here (Jesus knew my heart well enough to know i would and it was probably His way of being modest and not me disobeying). I must tell people how great and wonderful Jesus is. He took our sins unto Himself so we could be presented to GOD as a perfect gift. He Himself is in GOD and GOD in Him. Accept His love and let’s all go there…This time for all eternity! Take a leap of faith. Remember, Jesus jumped! He was living in Heaven and came to Earth and will again to come for us.

Face-Down, Face-Up: Just Face It

29 Mar

Some one once said they found success the hard way. Some call this pulling yourself up by your bootstraps. But the way my life goes, I expect If I looked down my boots would be missing. And if that wasn’t enough I would  probably hang myself with the strings. Of course I would never take my life. But, I mean my worst enemy in life is usually me.

Like Jim Carey in ‘Liar-Liar I could attempt to kick my own butt, that is essentially what I am doing now. But this didn’t help him, and never helps me. The truth inevitably saves us all. But the truth is hard to swallow.

It is easier to tell ourselves everything is going to work out than except the fact life never turns out right. But even this is a lie. the truth is everything is going to be great but not into we dig in and get dirty. Like your mom used to do GOD will throw all of the stained clothes in the wash. I fear that one or two socks will go missing when the dry-cycle is over. That is essentially what these trying times are, they are a method of drying us out. Anyone who has ever taken to alcohol knows the importance of drying out. We would also never reach for the Living waters JESUS spoke of at the well.

Among other areas, I am supposed to be part Irish, part Cherokee Indian. I am also Black Dutch, oddly enough I do not believe in ‘going Dutch’ by splitting the check on a date. Just as odd is how I seemed to have inherited all of the Irish blood. I am pale. I have a fighting-temper, and I always end up face down in the mud. Though, I never drink.

I have the bad habit of trying to do things my own way, always falling down. No how many times this happens each day starts with me climbing up preparing to leap and completely expecting to fly this time. I never do. I get burned every time; at least I inherited some of the Cherokee. My face should be red with shame, but I have become numb to ridicule.

I feel just like this guy I saw on Shark Tank. He claimed that he could make gold out of ocean water by building some type of hurricane-inducing machine. Just like the doodled drawing he presented, I rarely prepare my presentation as I should.  It is an insane idea but I would not be surprised if It one day worked, his idea not mine. The man who built the atomic bomb was surely subjected to laughter not his own. This explosive invention was not the best thing for mankind and a gold machine would be the same. We are already bent on fleshly riches, me being the leader of the pack.

I am not a greedy person, but when I think about just finding love and leaving the riches, the hard truth arises once again. I am afraid in this day and age no one would want to love someone completely broke, bearing no financial or social security. No one wants a man on social-security, right? Maybe the truth is I am afraid to love someone just for who they are and that the attempt to fight the dry-out has left my personality shallow.

Either way I will be sure to jump back into the fire tomorrow. I apologize how I tend to spill my life story every time I write, right?

Copyright  © Dustin Poteet

Writer’s Journey: Too bad ‘Journey’ is taken!

27 Mar

Scripture tells us GOD made man in HIS image. So as far as life goes I am the perfect image I should be. Having said this I was reading a fellow bloggers site. I will not name which one, but this lady did not just write. I mean she writes with greatly developed skill but also has a eye-catching image.

By image I mean that certain flair every movie star and rap artist walks around with. I will say hers is much more classy and not fake. Some people call it swagger, some describe it as the ‘it’ factor. I will begin with saying I am not the type that will ever walk around with gold chains and diamonds in my ears. I might one day be caught with a trimmed-out GMC Sierra. That point is the main substance of this post.

Let me explain. It seems it might be of need for me to build an image. But that comment about rolling round in a truck shows that I am not the kind of guy to show off. I could come up with a rap name, possibly Burning Shorty. But, come on, this is still over the top.

So how do I keep my modesty while glamming up my webpage? As a guy, this is the last time I will use the word ‘glamming’. How do I get more than 15 people a day to read my blog, finding paying sponsors, and become an actual ‘heavy-hitter'(also a bad rap name). Would I want to even sell-out knowing as soon as I do my message will be instantly cheapened and put on the shelf with every other so-called artist just trying to ‘come-up’ on an idea.

First things first, while I could use the income, I only have one real talent given to me by my Maker to use wisely. I also love the feeling of being honest and not a ‘car-salesman’ trying to hoodwink someone into lame products I would never touch. I am not trying to judge. If I do, it is only in an effort to find the answers in my journey of writing. Because, one thing is for sure, I want to take my gift to the next level and help others if possible. If I only end up with 15 readers a day, I will ‘try’ (emphasis on try) to still crank out quality material and leave those readers better off if only from having a reason to chuckle.

I hesitate to throw good money after bad by hiring a professional company to manage the look of Burning Shorts. The time It takes to study illustration techniques could be used to perfect my writing. The 68 thousand dollars it costs to obtain a Bachelor’s degree in Communications, while intriguing, would leave me with a Federal Loan to pay off working at an hourly position instead of writing. By some means I graduated and obtained employment in some magazine or publishing company, I would be forced to tow the company line along with the message they so desired. Even if it was an honest message, it would still be theirs.

Whether or not I start making any ‘desperate’ changes, I aim to send a message that a flawed man can learn, grow, and overcome with the Grace of GOD and the blood of HIS only SON JESUS. If you see anything differing (I should say call me on it, and please do), but it may just be my attempt to balance dreams with substance. That and I may just be trying to be a great writer when all I am doing is annoying the ones who are kind enough to put up with my personal stories.

Feel free to comment good ideas. Ha!

Ape To Man To Ape Again

27 Mar

Do you ever talk before you think? I was recently chatting with someone on a popular dating site. Halfway through the conversation I begin mentioning my restaurant and food likes/dislikes. But it didn’t stop with I like Chinese and Mexican food. No! I had to take it one step too far and go into a long story about eating too much shrimp at Red Lobster when I was 15. Ha!

I ended the conversation with a comment about my local movie theater. It hit me just as soon as I hit send that my topic choice could look much like the lead-up to asking for a date. This was in no way my intention. It just happens to be I was hungry and bored at the moment.

Look at It from this perspective, ladies. You open up an email listing a line of classy restaurants and the most popular thing people do after dining. You immediately think that the guy you met yesterday is taking a big liberty in planning a date he hasn’t even asked for. Am I right?

To add to the fact that men do not listen, I have a habit of clicking on someone’s profile without having read about their personality or hobbies and then I start immediately with what is going through my mind. Do you see the pattern? Maybe a little bit of narcissism that has gone undiagnosed until today.

I finally caught myself about to unload in some unsuspecting girl by way of email. I realized I never read one thing on her profile and went back to do so. I am glad I did because she had a surprising amount of things in common with me. So I started over with these topics in mind and not another run-away-train of the lack of good television shows, what my neighbor did in his yard, or any obscure story that proves I have no game, no common sense, and no idea of how to simply say hello and not scare off any chance of finding the right one in this lifetime.

I have no clue how to illustrate this post. But if the bottom of the page is consumed with fast-food menus, DVR schedules, or Letterman jokes, please instantly stop what you are doing, send me a message, and remind me to take yet another step forward in the evolution of man, not a giant leap back.

Ape

Copyright © Dustin Poteet

 

Reincarnation: Do I believe in it?

9 Feb
Public Domain Image with custom URL link back to source out of courtesy.

Public Domain Image with custom URL link back to source    out of courtesy.

I read the word reincarnation. The first thing I think is how can I come back as a different person if I can’t decide what person I am in this life. I know I am a Christian who follows GOD’s law and lives for conversations with JESUS. But, I can not figure out what I am supposed to do with my life. I am fairly talented at writing. However, writing has shown no chance of paying the bills. I want to do good works but in the same life be able to support a wife and possibly kids.

Is this selfish? I will let you think about it while I get back on topic.

This feeling that I am more mature and experienced than my time would allow makes me think I could be an old soul in a new body and mind. Most likely I am just a recipient of GOD’s lack of boundary of time and space. Yes, this sounds like the same thing. But as the saying goes: the devil is in the details.

One thing for sure, I do not believe in Buddha, Allah, or any other false GOD. I would like to say ‘no offense’. But I truly believe in one GOD; the GOD of Abraham and Isaac, the GOD that parted the Red Sea through Moses; the same GOD that lead the would be Israelites through the burning sands while supplying water, food in the form of manna, and wisdom through Moses and other humbled leaders. Therefore, I can not say it.

I lean towards believing in things that are not tagged as Christian, such as reincarnation. But I give all the credit to GOD.

Other ideas seem to be good to practice, like Tai-Chi and the like. But they are just that a practice, not a worship. Even if they were I would thank GOD for the gift, HIS gift of HIS only SON JESUS hanging on the cross and spilling his blood out of his sin filled heart, a sin that we committed and Christ did not have to bear.

In a light note, if I come back to this world many times, I want to be a fighter-pilot, then a NAVY Seal, and then an astronaut in charge of flying through space. Okay, if I could come back with good looks like Justin Timberlake, that would be great too. What about being rich? Well, more money, more problems!2285-1266776570eUiw

Copyright © Dustin Poteet

Blooming Twig Photo is Public Domain with URL out of courtesy to source: http://www.publicdomainpictures.net/view-image.php?image=13920&picture=blooming-twig”>Blooming Twig</a> by Peter Griffin

Rebirth Photo is Public Domain with URL out of courtesy to source: http://www.publicdomainpictures.net/view-image.php?image=5569&picture=rebirth”>Rebirth</a&gt; by Lillian Newman Mrs.

Much thanks to these kind sources! GOD bless!