There are two men at a BYU – Notre Dame football game. One man said to the other, “Could you please sit down, you’re blocking my vision.” The other man replied, “I’m sorry, I didn’t know you were having one.”
Do you believe in “visions”? Have you ever had one? We live in a world that’s skeptical about spiritual gifts, yet I can’t deny my own experiences. I would be lying if I did.
The idea for this blog came to me because of an experience I had this week. I ran into a woman I haven’t seen for nearly twenty years. What was most peculiar about the experience is that I had just been talking about her to a group of nearly two hundred people.
After my talk she came up to me, told me who she was, then said, “I can’t believe you remember our miracle from twenty years ago.”
There’s no way I could have forgotten. The miracle she’s talking about is a vision I had in her presence.
The dictionary defines a vision as: … something seen in a dream, trance or religious ecstasy, especially a supernatural appearance that usually conveys a revelation.
The visions I’ve experienced came in none of those circumstances, but in active, real-life settings. I’ve had two experiences in my life that I would classify as visions. I find it intriguing that one of them had nothing to do with “spiritual” matters, but much to do with my personal well being–as if someone or something was looking out for me.
The first happened when I was in my mid-twenties. At the time I owned a struggling clay animation company called ClayMagic Productions and we’d procured our first large client, Dentsu Advertising out of Tokyo, who had asked us to create a television commercial for one of the largest food companies in Japan. We had spent weeks building a set for the commercial but I didn’t know how to create the actual animation the client had requested–a group of “angel pies” (A popular Japanese treat that resembles a Moon Pie) holding hands and dancing, then jumping into the air. I had no idea how to make this happen without visible supports
One afternoon, as the deadline loomed, my production manager walked into my office. “We need to start shooting the dancing scene tomorrow morning, he said. “Did you figure out how to do the animation?”
I shook my head. “Not yet.”
“We don’t have much time left,” he said anxiously, then left my office.
Not knowing what to do I began to pray. That’s when I had a vision. I saw, very clearly an oddly shaped frame to hold the figurines while we animated them. I quickly sketched out what I saw in my vision then walked out and gave the plans to my production manager. “Make this.”
He looked at my drawing then said, “Where did you get this?”
“I’m not sure,” I said. “But let’s try it.”
Following my sketched plans my producer built the device. After he set up the camera to shoot the scene he came back into my office. “That thing you designed is genius,” he said. “Every time one of the supports is about to come into view, one of the characters moves in front of it to conceal it. It’s brilliant.”
Brilliant indeed. I didn’t even know if it would work.
My second vision concerned the woman I mentioned earlier. The first book I wrote was The Christmas Box, a #1 international bestseller. At the heart of the story is a woman grieving her deceased child at the base of an angel statue. The angel statue I write about actually exists in the downtown Salt Lake City cemetery. People come from all over the world to see it, leaving notes, flowers and toys at the statue’s base. On one occasion I was visiting the angel statue when I noticed a home-made Easter card. I read it.
My sweet little girl,
I hope there are Easter dresses where you are.
I was moved by the card and took it home with me. About six months later I gave a talk about grief and hope to more than five hundred people in a nearby city. After my talk a woman approached me. “Your talk really helped,” she said. “My daughter lost her little girl earlier this year and we’re both grateful for the hope you shared with us. She wanted to thank you but she’s having a hard time.”
I looked over to see a young woman looking toward us, her eyes swollen from crying. “Let me talk to her,” I said.
I walked over to the young woman and for several moments I just held her while she cried. After we parted she said to me, “Mr. Evans, I’ve been to your angel statue in Salt Lake City.”
At that moment I had the vision. I saw, very clearly, the Easter card I had taken home.
“I know,” I said. “You left a card for your daughter that said you hoped there are Easter dresses where she is.”
The women both stared at me in amazement. Then the young woman said, “How did you know that?”
“I just saw it,” I said. “I had a vision.”
The women left with a new sense of hope in the miracle we’d experienced. Seeing the woman again after all these years was a powerful reminder to me, not only of that experience, but that there is more to heaven and earth than is dreamt of in the world’s transitory philosophies. I’m just curious about how frequent these experiences really are.
Please Share. Richard Paul Evans is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of more than thirty books. His latest book, THE MISTLETOE INN, is currently a New York Times bestseller and is now on sale. You may order your copies now at Amazon, at a discount, by clicking this link. THE MISTLETOE INN