When I was a little girl I would have high fevers accompanied by a fantastic dream. The dream was always the same: I would find myself high above the planet looking out into space, knowing that there was an abundance of life out there and that even if life ended on the planet below me, life would still go on. I was supported from behind, being held high above the earth by a strong, light force. I never saw the face of the being who held me up there, but she emanated a powerful feeling of peace.
Looking down at the earth so far below and seeing myself hanging out in the middle of space, separated from my body, I would begin to feel anxious. The one holding me assured me that I was fine and that I could choose either to go out into the fullness of space or to return to earth. But the instant the anxiousness entered I was back in my bed, slammed back into my body with a tremendous force that left me disoriented, doubting the experience and wishing I was back in the embrace of my angel. This happened to me several times before I was five or six.
So many thoughts and feelings went through my mind during and after these episodes: confusion, regret, fear, uncertainty, doubt, longing, wishing - wishing from the moment I chose to return to earth that I had chosen to go on instead, yet feeling afraid to leave, feeling obligated to stay here.
The last time my angel came, she communicated to me that it was time to decide which way to go. I could go out into the stars or stay and live this life. I admit that fear was part of what made me stay. I was just a little kid and didn't quite trust what was happening to me. How could it be that I was floating above the earth? It couldn't be real, could it? So I chose to stay, and my search for God on earth began.
While growing up I was sort of a closet seeker. Not wanting to be led by the personal charisma of others, I read lots of religious books on my own. I picked out the parts that rang true to me and left the rest behind. I had many, many questions and found a few answers, just enough to keep me looking for more.
When I was 21 a friend and I were talking about the meaning of life. He told me about a book - I had never heard of it before - called The Urantia Book. I bought that big blue book and brought it home. I knew immediately that it was something different. I read the Foreword, looked over the table of contents, opened the book randomly, and read. I knew that once I started to study it my life would change in a big way, so I held off at first. I still had some issues to resolve in my life. For about six months I let the book gather dust under my bed. But through the mattress I felt the book drawing me, whispering to me.
Once I began reading it, the book became my constant companion. I would carry it with me to work, read it on the bus, study it at night, turn to it in times of despair, and come to love the truth it held. The gaps were closed, my questions were answered, my heart was filled, and the harmony chord of truth rang in my soul.
I studied the book on my own for nine years before I contacted any other students or attended my first study group. I wasn't sure what kind of nuts would be reading a book like this, but they turned out to be nuts like me and I felt at home with these people.
I like the idea of starting at the very bottom, as we do here on Urantia. We have more challenges, more chances to learn, more obstacles to overcome, and consequently a greater feeling of accomplishment when we succeed. I thank God that I've been given the revelation contained in the Urantia Book and I am honored to be a native of the "world of the cross."