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It was my birthday, the first since my father’s death. Two and a half months had passed, yet the pain and shock of his unexpected passing was still very raw. I simply wanted my birthday to pass by, just like any other day. I certainly had no reason to celebrate. 

I planned to have a quiet dinner at a local restaurant with my grandmother, boyfriend, and brother.  In a long conversation with my brother, I told him there was only one thing I wanted for my birthday. My father had a 16×20 framed print that hung on his bedroom wall. Ever since I was a little girl, I was taken by that picture. It is a famous print called the “Light of the World” that shows Jesus as a young child.  My brother told me he would go to my father’s house, get the print from the wall, and bring it with him to the restaurant. 

My boyfriend and grandmother met me at the restaurant. We waited for my brother, but he didn’t show.  He called to tell us his meeting ran late and he couldn’t make it. He assured me that within the next few days he would bring me the print. I was very disappointed because the picture was all I  wanted for my birthday. 

After dinner, my boyfriend went his way and I went the opposite direction to bring my grandmother home. While driving her home, my grandmother said, “Oh, Cynthia, I left some things in Peter’s truck for you. I cut some plant shoots for you to root, so don’t forget them. They will freeze if they stay in the truck overnight.” 

I dropped my grandmother off  and headed back to my boyfriend’s house. After I was there about 20 minutes, I said, “Gog [our name for my grandmother] said she had given you some cuttings from her plants for me to root. Are they still in the truck?” He said, “Oh no, I brought that stuff in for you.”

I started going through the things she had sent me. I put the plant cuttings in vases of water, then returned to look through what else was there. There was a flat, brown paper bag on the bottom of the box. I picked it up, puzzled, thinking, What can this possibly be? As I pulled out the contents, I was speechless and a bit overwhelmed.  It was an 8×10 print of “The Light of the World.” 

O my God, my father had to be behind this . . . from above.  I never discussed the conversation between my brother and I about the print with my grandmother. I called my grandmother immediately. When she answered, I asked, “Gog, why did you send me that picture? And where in the world did you get it?” 

My grandmother was a woman of deep faith and was in church every Sunday. She explained “Well, Cynthia, after the church service on Sunday last week, we went to coffee hour. I helped clean the room after most of the folks left. That picture was sitting on the floor next to the trash receptacle. Nobody knew who put it there and nobody wanted it so I took it. On the way home from church, I decided I would give it to you.” 

Totally speechless, I knew my father heard my prayers and my desire to have that print for my birthday. From heaven  he was creating a divine experience in my life on Earth. It is so much easier to receive when you believe in the power of the spirit. 

Cynthia Burke, Author of My Glimpses of Heaven

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Pat Hastings

Author, Inspirational Speaker, Spiritual Coach, Retreat Leader & Radio Talk Show Host

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