Thursday, May 24, 2007

One of My Favorite Books

Garden Gate Guard

I strongly recommend this book for anyone feeling the loss of a loved one. "Within the Gates" by Rebecca Springer is one of my favorite books and it was given to me as a Christmas present a few years back. This book is a revised (contemporary) condensed version of the original book written during the Victorian era which was called "Intra Muros" by Rebecca Springer.

I loved the condensed version so much that my friend found a first edition of the Intra Muros for me and gave it to me for my birthday. The contemporary condensed version is published by Christ for the Nations and I ordered 50 books from them (bulk prices) right after I finished reading it. I have given the condensed book to friends, family, my Lifeline clients and some hospital patients. I almost always carried some with me. I only offered the book if I felt an opening because they expressed their grief over losing a loved one. (Actually to friends and family -I just gave them the book because I thought it was so neat!) I tried to be sensitive to their needs as I would never want to offend anyone. No one ever refused it. They always seemed grateful.

I also gave this book to our Pastor and his wife and they liked it so much that they ordered a slightly different version (still contemporary - not as condensed) for the church bookstore because they deal with a different company. This version is called "Within Heaven's Gate" by Rebecca Springer and is published by~ Whitaker House.

Rebecca lived more than 100 years ago and took suddenly and seriously ill when she was visiting someone far from home. She was at death's door and it was during this time that she was given a vision of what we can expect in heaven.

"The vision emphatically teaches that there is a continuity between this life and the next, and the idea that heaven is a place fundamentally different from earth is wrong. Of course, as far as environment is concerned, all is perfect there. Nevertheless, heaven is a place where its inhabitants continue to learn and develop."

In the vision, Rebecca's brother-in-law said: "What strange ideas we mortals have of the pleasures and duties of the blessed life. We seem to think that the death of the body means an entire change of the soul. But that is not the case by any means. We bring to this life the same tastes, the same desires, the same knowledge we had before death. If these were not sufficiently pure and good to form a part of this life, then we ourselves may not enter. What would be the use of our oft-times long lives, given to the pursuit of certain worthy and legitimate knowledge, if at death it all counts as nothing, and we are to begin this life on a wholly different line of thought and study? No, no, would that all could understand, as I said before, that we are building for eternity during our earthly life. The purer the thoughts, the nobler the ambitions, the loftier the aspirations, the higher the rank we take among the hosts of heaven. The more earnestly we follow the studies and duties in our life of probation, the better fitted we shall be to carry them forward, on and on to completion and perfection there."

I tell people that even if you don't believe this really happened that this vision does magnify Christ and the things she speaks of do line up with Biblical scriptures and you can still look at it as a type and shadow of what is yet to come.

"If there is one great central truth that the book teaches, it is that human friendships made in this world are enduring in the second."

May anyone reading this book be filled with awe and comfort about our Eternal Home.


Chrysalis Angel said...

So which version of the book do you prefer? It sounds right to me. We are who we are. Maybe someday I'll post about it more, maybe not.

SeaSpray said...

Hi Angel - I liked them all. There is more info in the original Intra Muros which was published in 1898.

Rebecca was a kindergarten teacher. I believe she waited four years before she shared anything about this and comments on how there was so much more than what she could put on paper. I think she felt unable to articulate all the wonders that she saw.

So, I like them all and I am glad that I own them all. I suppose I favor the original Intra Muros because I appreciate reading it through her thought processes, but then, I enjoyed the contemporary versions too.

If you think you would ever want to give them to others and if you can do bulk (always cheaper) get it from Christ for the Nations. I don't remember now but I believe they sold 25 or 30 books at 50% off.

Within the Gates

Christ For The Nations, Inc.
P.O. Box 769000
Dallas, Texas 75376-90000

I just checked found that you can purchase this on Amazon as well as the other two versions.

I would LOVE to hear about your experience - seriously! :)

wolfbaby said...

Sounds lovely.

When my mom was sick just before she passed she told me that she seen Jesus waiting for her. She said that she felt whole and loved.

Sometimes that is all that comforted me.

SeaSpray said...

Hi Wolfbaby - I totally believe she had that experience. That was a gift from above of comfort, peace and hope for her and for those left behind that cared about her.

I have heard similar stories. Also, young children seem to see angels and/or Jesus easily.

Sometimes people see already departed loved ones. I didn't used to believe that. I thought you could only see Jesus or angels, but now I believe it happens.

Who knows why our Heavenly Father allows the veil between this world and the next to be lifted sometimes, so that we are given a glimpse of the hope to come?

All things work together for a reason. :)

If it is of God - ultimately,good will always come from it.

Thanks for stopping by Wolfbaby. :)

Whimsy Artist said...

Nice image used for the title of the book you describe! ;)

SeaSpray said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
SeaSpray said...

I was thinking this was the front cover to the book. But maybe it is just similar. I just went looking for the books (I have a lot of them that I give out) and they must be hidden under something,.

Do you want me to remove this pic? I will gladly. But if it is ok to leave up, I would like to and give credit to your name as the artist. If this isn't on the cover then it is very similar.

My sincerest apologies to you!

Whimsy Artist said...

I have no idea why you would apologize... it tickled me pink to go to my flicker profile... click my view my DNA link... scroll to the bottom - under ego surf and click the Ice Rocket link and find your post with MY painting on YOUR PAGE!!!! Talk about a BOOST TO MY EGO!!!LOL I am thrilled when anyone sees/likes something I paint, for you to actually post it on your page was such a compliment! I am honored.(I am aslo dyslexic so it takes me forever to type a message like this to you... I wish I could write books to use my paintings as the cover images!!!!) :)

Whimsy Artist said...

I googled and found the books image here but shhhh... don't tell Rebeca I kinda like your image choice of my painting even better, so you are welcome to leave it if she doesn't mind!!!LOL BTW, I read very little AND sloooooow, but my favorite book is Gift Of The Blessing, by Gary Smalley & John Trent... it helped me to understand and let go of our family tradition of judgemental, conditional love, and unhappiness to learn to love unconditionaly, smile, and be happy! I will look for this one you suggest and read it someday when I find it! :D

SnowLite said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
CouponAlbum said...

I appreciate your choice!! "Within the Gates" is truly nice book!! Love it!!

SeaSpray said...

Hi Coupon -It's a wonderful book! My friend that gave it to me is there now. I imagine her to be having a wonderful time, finally set free from the illness that kept her mostly bed ridden for more than 10 years.

kyle said...

I love to read books. I have a huge collection of good books. I like all types of books. I will read it too. Nice post. Thanks for sharing.

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