The Silent Harvest

By Francis Frangipane
(En EspaƱol)

In a dream I found myself inside the mind of a dying man. The man had been in a coma for some time; his family had been praying, but they did not know whether or not he had accepted Christ. All they were sure of is that, throughout his life, he had resisted their efforts to lead him to Christ.

As I dreamt I became so acutely aware of the man's state of mind that his thoughts, feelings and struggles almost seemed my own. Although his eyes were nearly closed and his vision clouded, he could see his loved ones at his bedside. I watched as he tried to reach toward his family, but outwardly his arm never lifted. I heard him speak their names, but no sound whispered through his lips. A loved one holding his hand asked, "If you hear me, squeeze." He heard and pressed his fingers against hers, but no movement was seen; his hand clearly remained limp. He was conscious; he could hear their prayers; he felt the warmth of their kisses on his face yet was perfectly incapable of responding.

The pride and isolation that had, throughout his life, stood guard over his heart were gone. A physical catastrophe had overtaken him. Death approached, and he knew he was unprepared for eternity. Submerged beneath his motionless exterior, a war had raged for his soul, and the Lord had won. Subdued by the relentless force of God's love, he was finally at peace. It was during his time in the hospital that he had silently prayed and accepted Christ as his Savior. I was watching his last effort to tell them He found Christ as life ebbed out of his body.

Suddenly, monitoring alarms ripped through the muffled silence of the room. His heart beat one last time, and I suddenly found myself looking down at the body of a man who had just died. The room was buzzing with nurses, while his family huddled in a corner, grieving. The idea of their loved one dying without receiving Christ was more devastating than the reality of death itself. I stirred and then woke. Yet just as I left the dream, the Lord spoke to my heart: "Tell them he's with Me."

Although some time has passed since I had this dream, I am increasingly aware that many of God's people carry a deep abiding heartache concerning the death of an unsaved loved one. Obviously this dream does not apply to all, but there are some for whom this experience is divinely directed. Thus, I submit this to you in a general sense because the Holy Spirit has assured me He will bear witness to your heart if this word is for you.

I have also felt an urgency to pass this dream on to you. The Lord has an important work for you. However, the enemy has used this unresolved loss to sow doubt into your soul. Not only are you troubled about your deceased loved one, but you are carrying doubts about God's love, and you doubt also the power of prayer. Your confidence in God has been compromised. Yet it is precisely at this time that you need to stand without doubt for other members of your family.

Beloved, though there are many questions about the mysteries of life, we must not let the unknown obscure the face of the known: God is good. We know God loves us because He sent His Son to die for our sins. Indeed, Jesus said, "He who has seen Me has seen the Father" (John 14:9). When we look at Christ, we see God, and we know that God cares.

Additionally, some of us have lost loved ones in sudden tragedies, where they seemingly had no time to repent or turn to God. Let me remind you: many who have faced near-death experiences tell of seeing their "life flash before [their] eyes." Indeed, they say that time itself seems to stop or slow dramatically. I believe that, even in what seemed like a "sudden" death, time slowed to a crawl. According to their testimonies, there is enough time in this altered consciousness to ponder one's entire life -- and to make a decision or even call upon the name of the Lord.

In spite of what we do not know about life's many mysteries, one thing remains eternally true: God is our loving Father. He does not desire that any man perish, and He will fight to save us, even to the moment of our death. Let us, therefore, cast our burdens upon the Lord, for He genuinely cares for us. And let us again run with endurance the race set before us, for He has promised that even for those "sitting in the . . . shadow of death, upon them a Light dawned" (Matt. 4:16).

Lord Jesus, thank You for dying for my sins. Lord, there are many issues I do not know, but I do know that You are good. Those things I do not understand, along with my praise, I give to You. I trust You with my life, and I put in Your hands the care of those I love.