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“How did we get here?” I asked with astonishment. “I thought we had parted company after our summit at the lodge.”
“It appears that we were transported here at the same time,” Joseph replied, looking around. “It seems that we are more united than we knew. Those who walk in peace are not so easily separated.”
“We passed through a wrinkle of time and space,” Joshua added, “and our spiritual unity brought us together.”
“We have been brought to the gate where I drank from the water of life,” I noted, looking at our surroundings. “Never could I forget this spot on the side of the mountain. The Creator must desire to speak with us, for He has transported us to the Gate of Death and Life. Let us go in.”
We all raised our hands and voices in praise, and the gate opened to receive us into His presence. The invisible river suddenly appeared, flowing gently toward us. The tree of life stood silently upon the river bank, its arms beckoning to us. It was adorned now on every side with tiny, delicate stars that shined brighter than a tropical sun.
Side by side we approached the light-filled tree and heard its beautiful, living voice of sweetness mingled with power and majesty. Feeling the radiance, we stopped at a respectful distance, sensing that the tree was ready to speak.
You have My face;
Anava, the Humble,
You will not stumble;
Joseph the wise,
You will advise;
Each with a gift
By which you will lift
And roll back the curse
Of sin and its hearse;
For I really do care;
Plant seeds of change,
Think it not strange,
Reach for the star,
It is not far,
My Kingdom is near,
There’s no need to fear,
It surely will come
For all, not for some,
But hearts must be turned
My word no more spurned
That what comes from above
Is only My love.”
We all fell to our knees by the impact of His word. The painful love in the heart of the Creator, who was willing and even eager to consume the bitter waters of death itself, swept through us. Our tears flowed without hindrance, watering the ground before us, and heavenly flowers of indescribable colors sprang up from each drop. As we wept, we were soon surrounded by a living sea of color and fragrance.
An unseen, heavenly Scribe having charge of the book of life loomed before us and wrote—almost slashing—a tav in our hearts with a sharp but unseen quill. 103 It was a single letter in the shape of an X, a signature, pregnant with generations of words yet to be spoken and understood, enduring principles proclaiming that tears shed for the right reasons bring forth joy, 104 and blood that is shed in love for others begets children of light.
Then one of the tiny stars detached itself from the tree and floated lightly toward Joshua, attaching itself to his forehead. “Behold his face,” the Voice of majesty spoke, “and His name shall be in their forehead. 105 So shall it be for all who eat of this tree and drink of this water.”
Then Joseph slowly pulled from his vest a small water flask. Pouring it out as a drink offering, he stepped toward the river and filled the flask with living water, drank of it, and tucked it back into his vest. I knew, as did the others, that his flask of water would never be drained and that it would remain a source of living water for all who desired to drink of it.
As he turned toward us, his face shone brightly, as if transfigured from within, and we heard the Voice of witness speak: “They that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament.” 106 We stood in awe as the Voice again spoke: “This is the Joseph that I know, and he shall steward My land and teach stewardship to others.”
I then noticed for the first time a small bowl under the tree, containing something that resembled coriander seed. 107 “What is it?” I asked silently. I walked slowly to the tree and picked up the bowl. It was alive, and transformed itself from a bowl to a tiny cup, which, regardless of its size, still contained the same amount of seed as was in the larger bowl. As I put it into my pocket, it seemed to take up no space at all, and it was weightless.
“You are My beloved son; this day have I begotten you,” 108 said the Voice. “Plant these seeds in the hearts of men and women, so that all may be My children.”
We stood in wonder at the awesome gifts that we had been given, knowing that we were all stewards of life with the calling to bless others freely, all who would hear and heed the anointed words that we were to speak into the world of men.
Just as suddenly, we found ourselves outside of Eden, standing on the path next to the bright, dim reflection of the true river that now flowed within our hearts. We looked up at the stately old trees whose limbs grew ever older and brittle with age—nothing like the youthful, ancient tree of life that had been planted in our hearts. Even the sun in the cloudless sky was pale in comparison to a single star shining through the healing leaves of the tree of life.
Yet though we longed to return to the living world running parallel to this deadened world, we knew that it was our mission to be witnesses of the true light—first fruits of His Kingdom—to reforest the earth with new and living trees, to teach the wisdom that surpasses knowledge, to recreate all things, and to bring life to the dead.