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Thursday, November 8, 2012

Interview with the Osbornes, Part III, The Ghosts of Westminster Abbey

In my first post on this topic, Myra shared the two visions she had of Jesus Christ that changed her from a flaky, pot-smoking teen to a disciple of the Lord. In Part II, Charles described what it was like to be slain onto the sawdust floor of a revival tent and speak in tongues for a half hour. The stories in today’s post will not disappoint.

We went to London, our first and only visit, and we were touring the Anglican sites there. We went to Westminster Abbey, and we were really shocked that it was like a big cemetery. We didn’t know that we were going to walk by so many tombs. And we went into a side chapel called St. [?] Chapel where it was quiet, and we were able to sit there and pray for a while. We were just being quiet and praying, and I looked over at Myra, and when I did, I saw a woman standing in front of her in a long dress, and her right hand was kind of raised with the index finger extended. And um, she was speaking to Myra, and Myra was being really quiet.

I’ve seen Myra in the Spirit lots of times, and I know that… I could just tell from her demeanor that she had been caught up in the Spirit and that I was seeing this spiritual being communicating with her. And so afterwards when it ended and this particular lady left, Myra sort of roused up, and I said, “Did you have a vision over there?” She said, “Well, I was not going to tell you that.” But because I had seen it happen to her, she decided to tell me. She was sitting there, and her feet were just aching, and she was thinking, “Oh, God, my feet hurt so badly, and this place is like one big cemetery.” It took a lot of the luster off it. She was thinking, so many dead people around here, and is there any wisdom to be had in all this? Queens, kings, noblemen, poets, scientists, statesmen…

You think about the church, which is in the center, but everything around it is charged full of sarcophagi and memorial tiles and monuments and statues everywhere, honoring the noble dead of England. You’re walking through English history everywhere you go, and it was just startling, so she asked, “Is there any wisdom to be had in all this?” (chuckle). Is there any message? You know, has anyone learned anything, and suddenly she was caught up in the spirit, and a lady’s voice spoke to her, and said, “Well, I can tell you this. Your feet don’t hurt over here” (laughter).

And she’s thinking, well that’s strange (more laughter). “OK, anything else?” And there was this chorus of voices and they were saying, “Yes, that’s right.” And then she said, “Well, I’ll tell you this. Only what you do for God lasts for eternity. Everything else passes away. The glory, the titles, the riches, the vision, the power, it all passes away. Only what you do for God is eternal.” And then came in a chorus of voices, “Yes, so true, amen.” Then the presence left, and she came back to her normal consciousness.

Myra has a sensitivity to perceive departed souls. She is not a medium. She would never hold a séance or light candles or perform any ritual to seek an audience with a departed soul. But if they show up and God has something to say through them, she and Charles have no problem hearing the message. They call it “the communion of the saints.” They do not believe that an impenetrable curtain cuts us off forever from the departed. This is a difficult issue for many Christians, because we are trained that communication with a departed soul is an occult event absolutely forbidden by God. However, there are many instances of the living being encouraged or guided by a limited contact with a deceased loved one.

For example, in our family, there is a story where my aunt LaVerne had an operation to remove an obstructive tumor in her colon. She awoke from surgery to see her deceased mother leaning over the bed rail. She was smiling and nodding as if to say, “Don’t worry, you’ll be fine.” The tumor was benign, LaVerne lived to raise her three children.

Another case comes from a book by Charlie Shedd, who likes to write about children and angels. He ran with a wild group with he was a youth. Their pranks got meaner as time went by. One night, they planned to rob a local trolley. It was driven by a sweet old man who knew most everyone in town and was admired by all. As Charlie contemplated what lay ahead, he felt a hand on his shoulder. His deceased grandfather’s voice said, “Charlie, why don’t you stay home tonight? Make some popcorn, watch a movie.” So he did. His other two friends carried out their planned heist. The problem was that the driver recognized one of them, and in his panic, the young thief shot him dead. Charlie’s two friends spent the rest of their lives in prison.

I have heard a zillion such stories in my life. The voice of a deceased aunt kept a Hispanic man from shooting himself. A child who was murdered appeared briefly to her mother to let her know that the killer did not rape her. A mother in the 1800’s, abandoned by her husband and in constant pain from an accident, committed suicide. She left her daughter to relatives who would despise and abuse her. The mother was allowed to appear just briefly to tell her daughter to be brave and be good (from a book called Dr. Nellie).

Christians may point out that angels could certainly imitate the voice of the beloved departed, and certainly that is a possibility. Once a particular teaching gets planted in our minds, it’s difficult to be open to another possibility. Sticking to what we’ve always been taught keeps us safe and on track. Nevertheless, those advocating the doctrine of the communion of the saints can point to Hebrews 12:1, “Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great a cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders, and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race that is set out for us” (NIV).

Charles shared one more story involving Myra’s ability to sense the departed.

This lady had planned her own funeral. She was very well thought of in the community, but she just didn’t like us. The funeral was just packed. Myra was just praying, and she felt a tap on her shoulder, and she turned around, and there stood the lady, and really, her cremated remains were down front. And she spoke to Myra and said, “Myra, I am so sorry. I did not know.” But she knew that she had come to an understanding in heaven about our purpose and our calling, and she had not understood us and then she did. And then the lady left her and stood by her husband through the rest of the funeral. So Myra just wept, because this lady had been hostile. Suddenly Myra felt like she had a friend in heaven.

I asked if Myra ever told the husband about her experience.

No, that was kind of private. We sometimes share that in meetings, but she kinda kept that to herself and didn’t tell the husband because it would be hard to explain to him that she had apologized. She just thought it was better to keep that to herself. I tell ya, it’s so wonderful living with Myra. Great stuff happens. And she has such a beautiful seer gift. You never know when an angel’s gonna come by, it’s just so great.

She had an abortion before she came to the Lord, and she was caught up in the Spirit and saw her son in heaven, and the Lord told her she’d had a son, and told her his name, Luke. She met him in heaven, and he forgave her. And that was such a great healing thing in her life. He appeared in the chronological age he would have been had he lived at the time of the abortion. So he would have been like 9, 10, something like that. You know, over the years we just forget about his stuff that happened.

The stories don’t stop coming. My next and last post concerning the Osbornes, called “Gold Dust and Angel Feathers,” will again astonish the reader with what the charismatics call an atmosphere of “open heaven.” Non-Christians who express awe and appreciation for a vast array of paranormal stories should take a breath, step back, and consider what all this might mean in their own lives.

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