Heaven Is Real: The Testimony of My Grandmother

Have you ever wondered if Heaven is a real place? If so, I strongly encourage you to read this article.

My grandmother passed away on March 7, 2015. The news was not a surprise to me because she lived to be 94 years of age. Her health had been on the decline in the past couple of years so her passing was inevitable.

The reason I am writing an article about my grandmother’s passing is that I believe the Lord can use the story of her passing to make a positive difference in many people’s lives.

The details surrounding my grandmother’s passing are worth sharing, as her story is an example of how God can use a dying person to provide a testimony to the living.

My Grandmother and I

I really enjoyed my time with my grandmother when I was young. I always looked forward to visiting her and to the times when she would spend a night or a couple of days at my parents’ house.

She was fun to talk to and fun to play with. My grandmother was excellent with children-she was beloved by all generations including her great grandchildren.

Young Wayne and His Grandmother
My grandmother and I playing the game Monopoly. I was having some fun in this picture.

My grandmother wasn’t a perfect person (as none of us are), but she was a Christian that feared the Lord. I believe she lived a long time because she had great family genetics and she feared the Lord.

I believe my grandmother was an example of how fearing the Lord can bring you a long lifespan:

“The fear of the LORD prolongeth days: but the years of the wicked shall be shortened.” (Proverbs 10:27)

Declining Health

My grandmother was an independent and energetic person during my childhood and early adult life. However, a few years ago she had a heart attack.

  • The strange thing about that event was that I was struggling to fall asleep the night it occurred because I sensed someone in pain and crying for help. I learned the next morning that my grandmother had a heart attack, and I wondered whether I had actually sensed her heart attack as it took place.

The doctors that worked on my grandmother’s heart after the heart attack said she would have four good years left. She would survive longer than four years, but her health was on the decline in recent years.

My grandmother’s energy level declined noticeably and her mental faculties deteriorated, but she was still a loving person.

In recent months I noticed a rapid decline in my grandmother’s physical appearance and noticed how she struggled to remember things. I realized that her remaining time on Earth was running out and that each time I went to see her could be the last time.

Grandma and I in June 2014
My grandmother and I in June 2014

An Alarming Visit

I planned to visit my grandmother on the final day of January 2015. Before the visit I was warned about how my grandmother would talk about things that made no sense and about how bad her dementia had become.

  • My grandmother’s short-term memory was nearly gone, and that she needed 24/7 monitoring.
  • One of my relatives summed up the situation by saying she wasn’t the same person we had known for so many years.

My January 31 visit to my grandmother’s apartment was quite alarming. She returned home earlier in the week after a hospital stay. She returned even though most of my family thought she should stay at a care facility.

I saw my grandmother sitting on a couch struggling to move and to breathe (she was burning 3,000 calories a day just trying to breathe) but trying her best to interact with the people visiting her (which included me, my dad, and some of my relatives).

As people talked, I quietly tried to see if I could sense what was going on with my grandmother’s health as I thought I had done the night she had her heart attack. I quickly realized that my grandmother was very close to death-so close that I mentioned this to my relatives and told my dad later that evening that it’s quite possible that she could die the next day.

A Moment of Lucidness

My grandmother asked me shortly before I had to leave if I was helping my church. I told her that I was.

In a rare moment of lucidness where it seemed like her spirit overcame her physical and mental limitations to give me an important message, my grandmother told me:

  • It was good that I was helping out
  • Everyone should go to church
  • Everyone should live right and have a clean life

(I have tears running down in my face as I type this because what she told me is so true and is something she would have said to me when I was a child).

Grandma was the person I knew for so many years in that brief moment in time.

Goodbye for Now

I had to depart shortly after that moment. I hugged my grandmother for what would be for the last time. My grandmother had virtually no energy and struggled to breathe, but she managed to get up and to walk to the door to say goodbye to my dad and I as we headed to the parking lot.

This moment is engrained in my memory because she had not stood up until that time. I was later told the basic reason why she got up to say goodbye to my dad and I was that we meant a lot to her.

Near Death

I truly was pessimistic about my grandmother’s chances to survive to see her next doctor appointment scheduled two days later. I really thought that I had probably seen her for the last time.

Unsurprisingly, the next day I was told that my grandmother had to be rushed to the hospital. My grandmother’s body was so full of fluid that she would have most likely died on her couch that same day if my aunt did not call her when she did to check on her.

My grandmother needed to have the fluids drained from her body and go to a care facility permanently. However, the prospects of finding a good care facility that would accept her long-term were not good (at times it looked very bleak).

Nevertheless, God provided the funds and a good care facility that would take her. That’s a story in itself of God’s provision in a time of great need and very limited resources.

A Vivid Dream

I had a dream that I will never forget while my grandmother was at the hospital.

I dreamt that I was alone in a room as my grandmother lay in bed. I saw her frail face and began to stare at her as I sought to deliver a message that her spirit would understand (before that dream I believed that my grandmother’s spirit had not deteriorated like her 94 year old body).

Shortly thereafter, a young country girl appeared in the room and stood next me. I recognized this country girl as my grandmother (she grew up on a farm in Oklahoma). I looked at her, cried, shook her hand tightly, and said “goodbye” to her in this life. The dream seemed very real to me.

In fact, the dream felt so real that I woke up with tears already streaming down my face and I wondered whether I had actually just said goodbye to my grandmother.

One Last Visit

My grandmother did not want to stay at the care facility after she was released from the hospital again. She wanted to return to her apartment where she could remain independent (at least in her mind).

However, my grandmother was in no condition to live alone and needed constant monitoring given her declining health and her mental condition.

I heard my grandmother was being treated well at the care facility and that her physical condition had improved. But her dementia caused her to forget events that took place just a few hours prior.

  • Nevertheless, my grandmother had a dream that remained in her memory until her passing. She dreamt that a man (originally it was described to me as an angel by one of my relatives) told her that she would not feel any pain when she dies.

My dad and I visited my grandmother at the care facility on February 21. We were joined by two relatives familiar with the care she received.

I saw my grandmother looking much better than when I saw her previously. She was moving well with the help of a walker and was able to converse with my dad and with others.

I told my grandmother that she looked a lot better than the last time I saw her, and I believed that she would be able to live for at least a few months longer because she was receiving great care. Wow, was I wrong…

As we talked to my grandmother, someone noticed that her socks were soaked with moisture. We soon discovered that fluid was seeping out her body near her feet.

My grandmother had to get urgent medical attention because something was not right about the situation. I left her for the last time as the nurses began to examine her legs and feet, but the lasting memory from that visit was how much better she looked than before.

To Heaven

My grandmother’s health declined rapidly not long after I visited her. Each day her condition seemed to get worse.

Soon we learned that her kidneys were failing and there wasn’t much we could do to stop the fluid buildup in her body. It was soon clear that my grandmother’s death was approaching.

My grandmother’s condition was really bad at the end of February. She was at the point where she could die any day.

My grandmother was given morphine and antidepressants to calm her down and to help her not feel pain. However, her physical appearance was so bad that it was heartbreaking for those who knew her to see her in the condition she was in.

I learned on Tuesday, March 3 that my grandmother’s condition deteriorated further and that she was at the brink of death. I felt it would be a major surprise if my grandmother lived beyond Wednesday.

  • I was told about another dream that my grandmother had. She apparently dreamt that she was on a bus heading to another world and she met the same man from the prior dream. She apparently was scared of this dream and did not want to go.

My grandmother was still alive on Thursday, March 5. I began to wonder what purpose God had in keeping my grandmother alive beyond expectations. I knew that the Book of Job indicates that God determines how long we have to live:

“(4) Who can bring a clean thing out of an unclean? not one. (5) Seeing his days are determined, the number of his months are with thee, thou hast appointed his bounds that he cannot pass;” (Job 14:4-5)

As I pondered the situation, I really started to believe that God had something in mind when it came to my grandmother’s impending death that would go far beyond the impact that it would have on my family. But I didn’t know what He had in mind yet.

The next day, Friday, March 6, I asked my dad if he heard an update on my grandmother’s health. He said he had not heard an update yet, but he would call one of my relatives to find out the latest.

My dad called at the perfect time. My dad was told that my grandmother had seen Heaven.

  • My grandmother indicated to my relatives in another rare moment of lucidness that she saw all the members of the family who had passed away and she described Heaven as a very beautiful place.
  • My grandmother also indicated that she wanted to go, but she didn’t want to leave us behind. My dad spoke to her one final time. He told her that she was definitely going to a much better place than the place she was leaving.

After the phone call I immediately thought about how the Apostle Paul indicated that he had seen third heaven and characterized the place as “paradise”:

“(2) I knew a man in Christ above fourteen years ago, (whether in the body, I cannot tell; or whether out of the body, I cannot tell: God knoweth;) such an one caught up to the third heaven. (3) And I knew such a man, (whether in the body, or out of the body, I cannot tell: God knoweth;) (4) How that he was caught up into paradise, and heard unspeakable words, which it is not lawful for a man to utter.” (2 Corinthians 12:2-4)

I also thought about the radical change in my grandmother’s attitude towards death.

My grandmother earlier in the week was afraid of dying after her dream about being taken to a different world. However, she now wanted to leave this life to join her loved ones at this very beautiful place she saw.

I finally realized why God did not take my grandmother’s life earlier in the week. God wanted to use my grandmother to let people know that Heaven is a real place.

I also realized that my grandmother would pass away no later than Saturday because her last task on Earth was finally done. In fact, I told a group of people at my church later that evening that she would pass away either that night or on Saturday.

The Lord allowed my grandmother to have several more hours of life so that she could say goodbye to people in my family. She passed away in the early afternoon on Saturday, March 7.

I was told she passed away very peacefully and did not suffer as the person in her dream promised her.

My Reaction

I did not cry when I heard the news of my grandmother’s passing and I honestly was not upset. I was actually quite calm to the point where you would have no idea that someone important in my family had just died unless I told you.

  • The main reason why I was calm is that I know my grandmother went to Heaven and I know that I will be reunited with her someday.
  • Also, the Lord prepared me for the news of her passing when my Bible reading for Saturday, March 7 (which was generated at random by a Bible app) included 2 Corinthians 5, which discusses death and the resurrected body.
  • Finally, I had my dream that seemed so real to me that I felt like I had already said goodbye before I saw my grandmother for the last time.

What About You?

What about you? Do you know for sure that you will go to Heaven when you die?

If you answer “yes”, why do you believe that you will go to Heaven when you die? Did you answer, “I have done a lot of good things” or “I’m a good person”?

  • I’m sorry to disappoint you but doing a lot of good things and being a good person does not entitle you to a spot in Heaven.

If you want to learn how you can really know for sure that you will go to Heaven when you die please check out my “Are You Going to Heaven?” page.

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Wayne Croley
Wayne Croley

Hi! I’ve studied and written about Bible prophecy since I was a teenager. My goal is to make Bible prophecy easy for you to understand while avoiding the sensationalism seen elsewhere. I am the author of several end time books, including Prophecy Proof Insights on the End Times, a comprehensive book about the end times. I hold an M.B.A. and degrees in Managerial Economics and Political Science.


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  1. Blessings up on you Brother Coley… This story is a very God ordained life story… Which could be told to young people at a youth conference. This is wonderful. How God used your grandmother’s last days on this earth is a true testament of how He, God, will reveal to His servants what will happen before they do, as God was also showing you before these events took place.
    Amos 3:7
    “Surely the Lord God will do nothing but he revealed his secret unto his servants the prophets. ”
    Keep on working and walking in the manifested power of Jesus Christ…! May the Lord continue to reveal His secrets unto you!

  2. Hi Wayne,

    I am sorry for making this a venue for discussing other things that is out of the topic of this post.

    Somehow I felt that I might have been disrespectful here.

    Rest assured I will not comment on this post anymore.

  3. Hi Emmanuel,

    Jn 3:13 says, “And no one has ascended into heaven, but He who descended from heaven, even the Son of Man.”

    I am not a Seventh Day Adventist. But I believe that the Spirit of someone who died will be like in a comatose state.

    This is how I understood what will happen the moment our spiritual eyes will close, it will only be a blink of an eye, when it opens, what our spiritual eyes are going to see is either we see Jesus coming down from the clouds or we will see ourselves right before the white throne judgement. The consciousness of how long we are on this state is never there.

    Psalms 115:17 The dead praise not the LORD, neither any that go down into silence.

    Psalms 146:4 His breath goeth forth, he returneth to his earth; in that very day his thoughts perish.

    That’s why it is written “every eye will see and every mouth will confess that He is Lord”, this is for both the righteous and the wicked.

    John 11:11-14 …Our friend Lazarus sleepeth; but I go, that I may awake him out of sleep. Then said his disciples, Lord, if he sleep, he shall do well. Howbeit Jesus spake of his death: but they thought that he had spoken of taking of rest in sleep. Then said Jesus unto them plainly, Lazarus is dead.

    The above scripture tells of the ignorance of the apostles about the real state of the dead. In Jesus’ truth, Lazarus is only sleeping. Jesus intentionally arrive there after four days. Aside from showing the Power of God, this is to debunk the belief of the jews that the dead will resurrect after 3 days and then will go to Heaven immediately, if he is righteous.

    If this is the case, then Lazarus could have a recollection of what he saw in Heaven, and he could have given account of the experience. He could have wrote a book called “The Gospel of Lazarus”. Like Paul, Lazarus could have been a minister of the Gospel and wrote so many letters about so many revelations he received from his experience in the Third Heaven. The same case for the dead 12-year old girl that Jesus’ woke up.

    Here are some more scriptures to ponder:

    1Corinthians 15:20-23 But now is Christ risen from the dead, [and] become the firstfruits of them that slept. For since by man [came] death, by man [came] also the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive. But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ’s at his coming.

    Acts 2:29,34 “Men and brethren, let me freely speak unto you of the patriarch David, that he is both dead and buried, and his sepulchre is with us unto this day. For David is not ascended into the heavens:…”

    Scriptures about the Spirit that is the Breathe of Life:

    Job 33:4, The Spirit of God hath made me, and the breath of the Almighty hath given me life.

    Genesis 2:7, And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.

    Acts 7:59, And they stoned Stephen, calling upon [God], and saying, Lord Jesus, receive my spirit. 60 And he kneeled down, and cried with a loud voice, Lord, lay not this sin to their charge. And when he had said this, he fell asleep. (funny the word sleep appeared often in the Letters)

    Luke 23:46, Jesus called out with a loud voice, “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit.” When he had said this, he breathed his last.

    John 20:17, Jesus said, “Do not hold on to me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father. Go instead to my brothers and tell them, ‘I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.'”

    1 Peter 3:18 For Christ also died for sins once for all, the just for the unjust, so that He might bring us to God, having been put to death in the flesh, but made alive in the spirit; 19 in which also He went and made proclamation to the spirits now in prison, …

    In Heaven there will be no more mother, father, husband, wife. Some will be kings and others will be just part of the nations in the New Heaven and New Earth.

    I hope we are more excited to see God than our loved ones when we get there, or else there will be flashes of lightning, rumblings, peals of thunder, an earthquake and a severe hailstorm 🙂

    • There is a lot more scriptures to back this up.

      We just need to be like the Bereans, not just receiving the messages from bible schooled pastors/preachers and popular bible commentary books, but most importantly, with the guidance of the Holy Spirit, searching the scriptures to find out if they are right.

    • Hi Emmanuel,

      The context of the rich man and Lazarus is about the fate in the after life of those who suffered with the Lord and those who enjoyed in this life without the Lord. His audience here are the Jews and the Pharisees.

      Abraham’s Bosom is not Heaven. If it is so, then why would Jesus contradicts himself if He narrated that the rich man called out to Abraham as Father Abraham (because Jews calls Abraham their father). Isn’t it that Jesus said we will not call anyone father but only our Father in Heaven? It could have been narrated with an inclusion of Abraham rebuking the rich man telling him not to call him Father.

      About the spirit of the martyrs coming out from the graves, why do we accept this understanding that whenever a certain man or a group of people who are massacred, we tell it to the court their spirit is crying out for justice. If they are in heaven already, they will not cry out of for justice anymore. What could be more joyful, peaceful, and blissful other than being with the Lord. The Lord understood our pain and our desire for revenge, He understood this very nature of ours. This is the last kind of spirit that resounded from every martyr before their death.

      Why can we accept that John the Baptist has the Spirit of Elijah. Because we understood that it is only the character of Elijah that is manifesting in the ministry life of John the Baptist?

      Can we say that our character is our spirit? Angry Spirit, Joyful Spirit, Vengeful Spirit, Gentle Spirit, Fighting Spirit, Indomitable Spirit,…

      • “About the spirit of the martyrs coming out from the graves, why do we accept this understanding that whenever a certain man or a group of people who are massacred, we tell it to the court their spirit is crying out for justice. If they are in heaven already, they will not cry out of for justice anymore.”

        Rev. 6:9-10 “And when he had opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of them that were slain for the word of God, and for the testimony which they held:
        And they cried with a loud voice, saying, How long, O Lord, holy and true, dost thou not judge and avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth?”

        • Hi Connie,

          This is how I understand the difference between the soul of man and the spirit of man:

          Soul of Man is his emotions, senses, conscience, cognition

          Spirit of Man is his heart and character

          There is a saying that we cannot bring anything that we have acquired in this world in the next life, only our character.

          • You said that once in heaven, people would not be crying out for justice anymore. Scripture says otherwise. We take our emotions, intellect, and character (without its faults)with us when we die. The only thing we leave behind is our body. Regardless of the use of the word soul or spirit, it still is people who have died and gone to heaven and who are awaiting resurrection who are very much cognizant of what is going on, and who are asking for justice.

          • I agree with you Connie, we cant separate a soul from its spirit, I understand it is one and the same.

          • I agree with you Connie, we can’t separate a soul and its spirit, they are one and the same.

    • I ‘m convinced that the soul lives on, considering Luke 23:43 the thief on the cross to whom the Lord said “Truly I say to you, today you shall be with me in paradise”. also about Stephen, (Acts 7:56) he ‘saw’ the heaven open and son of Man standing at the right side of God, he saw that with his spiritual eyes. Lastly in Rev 6:9, John saw the souls of them that were slain for the word of God.

      There is no fear in LOVE.

  4. My condolences Wayne. As to Eaglet, are you talking of soul sleep? I believe the souls of human beings are conscious somewhere after death. The story you quoted of the richman and Lazarus testify to that. Even Revelations chapter 5 talks of souls of martyrs under the alter who were conscious!

  5. Wayne, you know that your grandmother didnot ‘die’ but fell asleep and though she is missing in flesh here, she is present with our beloved Father and those gone and are with our eternal father are luckier and instead they should cry for us living in this satanic world we live in and one day my dear friend you will be reunited with your grandmother, and know one thing mon ami, she is always with you in spirit —put your hand over your head and your will feel her presence. GOD our father…our Saviour JESUS CHRIST and the HOLY SPIRIT is where we should hope to be but only and only if you believe that the only way to GOD is through His beloved son that died for our wretched and filthy sins. May GOD’s love, peace and blessings be with you. GOD bless, Nellie

    • My condolences Wayne.

      Our loved ones in Christ who died are not yet in Heaven, they are just sleeping, waiting for the coming of Jesus Christ to wake them up. Understand the story about the death of Lazarus, the attitude and belief of the apostles, and the truth about what Jesus said about Lazarus’ true state.

      For as in Adam all die, so in Christ all will be made alive. BUT EACH IN HIS OWN TURN. Christ, the firstfruits (144,000 Rev. 14); then WHEN HE COMES, those who belong to Him.

      When Stephen said “receive my spirit” it means the spirit is the breathe of life that God gave him. The same also for Jesus when he said ” father into your hands I commend my spirit” it also means the breathe of life, because Jesus has not gone yet to heaven right after He died on the cross.

  6. I’m so sorry to hear about your grandmother,Wayne. My deepest condolences on your loss, for you will miss her. I rejoice with you that she is with the Lord and you will see her again.