Do you ever, as I sometimes do, try to picture where we can go when we pray, that very different level; what it is like there? Do you try to probe deeper into all the vibrant wonder and our mystic joining with unseen reality?
This is where my imagination takes me.  I picture a short, narrow tunnel where light and shadows wrestle on the walls.  I take one step forward and come to a crimson fountain in the shape of a cross. Going through the fountain I am exhilarated by a new quality of air. I move on into radiance and notice that I am clothed in a robe of scintillating loveliness and glowing splendour.
A jewelled emblem on my attire says, "Clothed in the righteousness of Christ." The radiance has won, the shadows of earth are left far behind. Numberless angels are there and heroes of the faith; the atmosphere is charged with worship and joy. Compelled onward, I begin to tremble as I come before a sapphire throne (Ezekiel 1:26, Ezekiel 10:1) which is encircled by an emerald rainbow and set on a sea of crystal (Revelation 4:2-6).   ETERNAL MAJESTY on that throne is indescribable, I cannot see clearly because the brilliance of the glory is overwhelming. I fall prostrate on the crystal sea before the sapphire throne and the fire of the emerald rainbow is alive with Heaven's music. Then I hear a voice, a voice of such exquisite sweetness that it rivets my heart with breathless fear and delight.  Responding to that voice, I raise my eyes and see a golden sceptre extended to me and I hear something else. It is a noise like the unlocking of a mammoth safe or treasure vault.  To my amazement I see the vaults of Heaven being opened before me.  The fulfillment of every good and noble desire is in those vaults, lasting riches beyond my wildest dreams; ...  and I am bid to ask and receive!
An angel explains to me that the locks on the vast treasure vaults are programmed to open as believers pray.
Is this really true?  How can it be possible?
Because forever we've got a MAN in Glory, Who opened the portals of Heaven to us.
Having even this limited view, why would I ever be satisfied to be an earth-bound pauper?
     With love & prayers,

The little gate to God

by Walter Rauschenbusch -    one of my favorite Baptists
In the castle of my soul
Is a postern gate,
Whereat, when I enter,
I am the presence of God.
In a moment, in the turning of a thought,
I am where God is,
This is a fact….
With God is a great silence.
But that  silence is a melody
Sweet as the contentment of love,
Thrilling as a touch of flame.
In this world my days are few
And full of trouble.
I strive and have not;
I seek and find not;
I ask and learn not . . . .
When I enter into God,
All life has meaning.
Without asking, I know;
My desires are even now fulfilled,
My fever is gone.
In the great quiet of God
My troubles are but pebbles on the road,
My joys are like the everlasting hills….
So it is when I step through the gate of prayer
From time into eternity.
When I am in the consciousness of God,
My fellowmen are not far-off and forgotten,
But close and strangely dear . . . .
They shine, as if a light were glowing within them.
Even those who frown on me
And love me not
Seem part of the great scheme of God . . . .
So it is when my soul steps through the postern gate
Into the presence of God.
Big things become small, and small things become great.
The near becomes far, and the future is near,
The lowly and despised are shot through with glory…
God is the substance of all  revolutions;
When I am in him, I am in the Kingdom of God
And in the Fatherland of my Soul.
Is it strange that I love God?
And when I come back through the gate,
Do you wonder that I carry memories with me,
And my eyes are hot with unshed tears for what I see.
And I feel like a stranger and a homeless man 
Where the poor are wasted for gain, 
Where rivers run red,
And where God’s sunlight is darkened by lies?  
— Walter Rauschenbusch, 1918