Knock, knock, knockin’ on heaven’s door

I dreamed I went to heaven. Stay with me here. The other night I dreamt that I got a personal invitation to check out heaven, sort of like one of those invites you get in the mail from a leasing agent or financial advisor. Come have a steak dinner and listen to a presentation about a timeshare at a beachfront property in Florida or a sales pitch on the best way to save for retirement. You’ve seen those invites.

I was offered the chance to go to heaven, have a look around, and meet up with three people. Right away, I thought about meeting up with Jesus Christ and having the chance to speak with the big guy. Before his name was out of my mouth, a little man dressed in a long robe and carrying a large book appeared in front of me and said “nope” that was not possible.

The stern little guy went on to say that Jesus was the one exception. I could only meet him if a permanent stay was in order, and he flipped through a couple of pages before finding what he was looking for, and said that my permanent resting place was still very much an open question mark. When he saw that my afterlife was questionable, he looked up over his glasses, shook his head in disgust and said that I had a lot to work on to improve my chances.

Making the most of my choices 

I had any number of follow-up questions, including if he was St. Peter, but I thought better of it. He added quickly that everyone else was “open game,” assuming, of course, that they were in heaven and not you-know-where. He said too that everything was on the table, I could look around wherever I wanted to go.

I thought about my choices. My dad was an obvious one. I thought about one of my friends from college. I thought too about all the famous or historical people that would be interesting to sit down with over a coffee or cold beer. The names jumped out at me rapid fire: St. Francis of Assisi, Thomas Aquinas, George Washington, Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, Alexander Hamilton, Winston Churchill, George Patton, Albert Einstein, Martin Luther King, and Robin Williams. In the end, I chose my father, my friend, and well, William Shakespeare, once a writer, always a writer. Sorry about my choices, but it’s my dream. 

The visits went well. My father walked with me on a well-groomed trail around a beautiful lake. We’d stop every so often and look at the white-tail deer grazing on the mountain laurel in the woods or an eagle swooping down to catch fish in the lake. It was the perfect day, it felt like a postcard, unlike any others I’ve ever experienced. 

Special moments

My dad wanted me to tell him about his grandchildren. He seemed really calm and at peace. In fact, he seemed calmer than I remember him when he was alive. He knew everything that I was telling him, but he wanted to hear the news from my lips. In addition, he wanted to see the photos of my kids on my phone and to hear about their hopes and dreams. My conversation with my friend was different. We caught up on long ago forgotten memories. I asked if he remembered the time he woke up with Sharpie marker on his face (not my doing) and went to class, and he asked if I still talk in my sleep. We sat on the boat dock and skipped stones across the lake. It was like we had never skipped a beat.

My talk with William Shakespeare was unique too, we sat at a picnic table, and he asked me to explain how the Amazon Kindle works. He took sips from the craft beer that we grabbed from a cooler and was especially surprised to hear that none of his works were on the New York Times best seller list. He laughed a hearty laugh when I told him Prince Harry and Pamela Andersen were both on the Hardcover Nonfiction List and John Grisham and James Patterson were high on the Hardcover Fiction List. He laughed again when I told him that Twelfth Night was one of my all-time favorites and that Romeo & Juliet is taught in schools across the globe.

I worried about getting on the bad side of the little man with the book, so I was careful to avoid any questions about heaven, but for what it’s worth, my dad did say that people in heaven were amazing, that he got “three square meals a day,” and that the deserts in heaven “were to die for.” Take it for what it’s worth.

I’m not sure what to make of the dream, other than, if I’m so lucky to make it to heaven, to be excited about the desert bar, but I did leave with one big lesson, to be kind to others and to make the most of my time in the here and now.


Thank you for reading. Please follow the HoTM site and join in on the discussion. I’d love to hear your thoughts. In addition, please visit my personal blog at or follow me on Instagram at @writingfromtheheartwithbrian.

All the best, Brian.

Images by Pexels.

35 thoughts on “Knock, knock, knockin’ on heaven’s door

  1. What an interesting dream Brian. I always believe dreams, when we get to visit with loved ones, are always a little more than a dream. What a treat it must’ve been to have these moments.

    Liked by 4 people

  2. What a lovely dream, Brian. Choosing three people would be tough as there are so many possibilities. I have genealogical questions, it has been so long since I have seen my mother, and my father, well, my heart was shattered when he died. I love your takeaway, though. We must endeavor to be the best version of ourselves – always. The dream itself was a treat, though. I would love to spend time chatting with important people in my life – if only in a dream.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Oh, yea, it was fun to think about it afterward. I don’t always remember my dreams so it was fun to play back in my mind. Yes, now that I’m older, I would have a lot of genealogical questions for my dad. I would want to talk to him now too that I’m older and see life through older eyes. Thanks for the feedback. Great to hear that it got you thinking of your own family.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Lovely piece. Sounds like the most blissful vacation anyone might have from an earthly perspective. I wonder — did the eagle kill and eat the fish? That would mean death exists in heaven. Ah, but it is your dream, and I’m betting you will get there. Be sure to report back!

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Oh, what a great question, Dr. Stein. What a great eye for the details. I didn’t even think twice about that . . . shows how detail oriented I am. When I woke up and remembered the dream, I didn’t even think about that. Sadly, I can’t offer much more detail. I was laughing more at my crazy dreams and the places where my mind goes! Ha, ha.


  4. I’m stuck on the idea that desserts in heaven were ‘to die for’. You slipped that pearl in at the end…but I caught it. Funny, Brian`! I love this piece…start to finish. xo! 😉😉😉

    Liked by 4 people

  5. The invite you received in your dream reminded me of a recent mailer inviting me to a presentation on cremation urns at a local Denny’s haha! I love your takeaway, through. All we have is the here and now, so we should each just endeavor to live fully and be kind to others. The the end of the day, that’s really all that matters.

    Liked by 3 people

  6. I love all the comments on this beautiful piece, Brian. So interesting to think about having to choose three people and how the scenarios played out. I love all the details in your dream. But I still can’t get over that you can take you phone up to heaven — and your Kindle. 🙂

    But here’s what really touched me – that your dad wanted to hear the stories about your kids from your lips. I think perhaps even in Heaven, story-telling is important. Beautifully done, my friend!

    Liked by 3 people

    1. You know me well enough now Wynne, my brain goes in some crazy directions. I have no proof on how things really are in heaven, but I suspect you’re right, no phones, no kindles. Wouldn’t it be cool though to go to heaven though and sit down with Shakespeare or St. Francis or some of the great figures in history. Or, to talk with family members. Now that would really be special. Thanks so much for the feedback, glad that the piece touched you.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Brian, what a lovely dream and a lovely piece of writing, too. I don’t think I’ve ever dreamed of heaven before. I like your choices of who you could meet up with again. I’m not sure I’d know who to choose. The first one would definitely be my Mum; however, if I did that, it would be very painful all over again for her to drift off back on her cloud afterwards. I can’t think of anyone famous who I’d like to see. I would quite like to see my Nan again. There would also probably be an old friend who died in her forties. I’d love to have another conversation with her. I’m really not the greatest at making decisions at the best of times, so I think I’ll settle for those three I mentioned. Happy dreaming, Brian 😊.

    Liked by 2 people

  8. I hope the “stern little guy” checking the ‘bog book” took a wrong turn somewhere Brian 🙂, and no one is ‘keeping book’
    in Heaven.
    If our name isn’t already been written in there when we finally check out of this planet, we’ve already checked into a really ‘hot’ place for eternity 🔥
    Pleasant dreams brother ☺️


    1. My brain goes into a lot of different directions, throw in that it was a dream and that explains why I didn’t really hold to everything the Bible says. I wouldn’t want to infer too that I’m a shoo-in for heaven because I know I’m not. Ha, ha.


    1. Oh yes I did notice that Julia! But you’re a Saint. I’m just hoping that you’ll put a few good words in for me with the big guy!!!!! I’m going to need all the help I can get. You notice that I’ve written about heaven a couple of times, but I’ve never said that I’m getting in!!!! Ha, ha.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I’ve been called a lot of things in my lifetime, but never ‘Saint’. I’m the eternal optimist who believes that under the skin, we’re all saints in disguise and that as soon as we get that figured out, we’re all in. See you there, Brian. 🥰

        Liked by 1 person

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