PART I -THE SEARCH BEGUN
A JOYFUL NOISE
“Make a joyful noise unto the Lord, all ye lands,” sang the angels in the heart of Heaven’s realm. “Serve the Lord with gladness; come before His Presence with singing. Know ye that the Lord He is God. It is He that made us, and not we ourselves. We are His people and the sheep of His pasture. Enter into His gates with thanksgiving and into His courts with praise. Be thankful unto Him and bless His Name. For the Lord is good. His mercy is everlasting, and His truth endureth to all generations.”
“They are at it again,” Reg whispered irrepressibly. “Is it not wonderful the way the angels sing and sing?”
“Did you notice that they sang, ‘Enter into His gates with thanksgiving’?” Janet asked. “Perhaps they always sing their praises to Him when they first arrive.”
“That may be the reason,” I agreed. “Certainly this plain held no living creature a moment ago as far as we could see. Now look at them all!”
In the glowing radiance of colour caused by the light filtering through their wings, the great company of angels was a dazzling sight. They were robed in every tone and shade of all the colours seen in earth or Heaven. Their faces were lit with the rapture of their worship as they gazed toward the light reflected from the eternal Throne.
At first they were standing, but when they came to the words, “It is He that made us, and not we ourselves. We are His people and the sheep of His pasture”, they all fell on their knees. Then they rose up to sing the remainder of their psalm.
Reg, Janet and I had instinctively knelt with the angels, arid there we remained, watching the great company disperse. Some stood talking together. Others rose into the air and wheeled off rapidly into the far distance. Some sat in groups, drawing their wings closely around them, and we knew they were entering into silent meditation.
One angel in a glowing, ruby gown came striding gracefully toward us. He was about seven feet in height, with gold-bronze hair falling to his shoulders, and steady blue eyes.
“Greetings, children!” His voice was resonant with power. He lifted his hands in blessing over our heads. We rose up to meet him gladly. This was the first time we had spoken to an angel of such high degree. We stood silently a moment, and then, in the way they have in Heaven, the angel spoke our names.
“Janet.. . Bernard.. . Reg.”
“And your name?” Reg asked.
“My name is . . .” and here the angel’s voice trailed away so that we could not hear or understand. Reg looked puzzled and was about to ask him to repeat it when I intervened.
“We cannot yet hear the names of the angels. My guide told me that the Father names them in the Heavenly Language that is too high for us to understand. We can only receive an impression of it, just as animals on earth receive an impression of man’s language.”
“The Father names us with a part of His own Name,” the angel explained reverently. “Thus we are linked to Him, because, knowing each our own name we know a part of His.”
“How wonderful that must be,” Janet breathed.
“It is,” the angel agreed with a great shining in his eyes. “Has He not said, ‘Because he hath set his love upon Me, therefore will I deliver him; I will set him on high, because he hath known My Name’?”
“That refers only to angels, I suppose,” Reg mused.
“Oh no, it concerns men, too ! As they learn and strive, overcome and advance in Heaven’s realm, they come, also, to know a part of His Name. Then they are ‘set on high’, even as he said.”
“Does any mortal know all of His Name?” I asked diffidently, for I did not know if this was too great a question for our understanding. But the angel did not hesitate.
“The Great Mother knows His Name,” he exulted. “She alone of mortal man… but could it be otherwise?”
For a while there was a silence as the angel seated himself on the mossy ground and invited us with a gesture to do likewise. He gazed out over the plain, and then, without turning his head, he continued:
“The Name of the Father is mighty throughout the whole of I-leaven’s realm. Men who search the Scriptures on earth come to know a little of the power of His Name. Can you quote a text?”
He glanced suddenly at Reg and smiled. Reg looked embarrassed and began uncertainly:
“I say, I am afraid I did not study the Bible much-.” He broke off.
“I had forgotten about ‘reaching out’ for information with our minds! I must have clone it unconsciously for I do know.” Quickly he quoted, “‘Sing unto God, sing praises to His Name; extol Him that rideth upon the heavens by His Name ‘.”
“Good,” the angel approved, and turning to Janet, “And you?”
“I had one all ready in case you asked me,” Janet said eagerly.
‘His Name shall endure for ever; His Name shall be continued as long as the sun’.”
‘Yes. Now you, Bernard.’
“I did not think of reaching out for one,” I confessed, “so-just a moment!” I mentally searched in the surrounding wisdom and then quoted, “‘Let them praise the Name of the Lord, for His Name alone is excellent; His glory is above the earth and Heaven’.”
“You have all done very well!” The angel smiled at us. “Now
how would you like to be my students ?”
“Your students ” I echoed. “Do you take them?”
“Yes, of course. Do not look so surprised !” He laughed deeply at our astonishment. “Now that you have finished your Term of Reparation, travelled a little and given your services in the Hall of Reception, you may be taken one step higher in the search for wisdom, if you will. How do you like the idea?”
“Very much,” Janet and I said together, but Reg confessed:
“I am longing to meet some friends in the Hall of Adventure! Would it be very wrong–
“Of course it would not,” the angel interrupted warmly. “After all, you are the baby of this group and deserve a little play. Shall we excuse him?” he asked us quizzically.
We laughingly agreed and a few moments later watched Reg speeding off in quest of adventure.
Then, before we could move or speak, the Beloved stood in our midst.
Silently, mute with rapture, we fell on our knees before Him, bowing our heads. There was a breathless pause. A faint movement told me that He was greeting our angel, another that He had caressed Janet’s head … and then His gentle hand for a moment smoothed my hair. Oh, my beloved King! How satisfyingly He filled and thrilled us with His sweetness. Speaking into my heart (and, I found later, into the hearts of the others) He told me that I should often commune with Him thus in the Hall of Audience, that so great is this power in the heart of Heaven’s realm that the consciousness of everyone is lifted. Some feel only a strong, holy influence, some receive little “flashes” and glimpses of His face; to others He appears in their midst, as now, while the Higher Ones constantly worship Him heart to Heart.
What wisdom He poured into us in that precious communing! Then, when we were once more alone, what fragrance of joy and brightness of glory were left behind.