In 1990, I was rushed to the hospital with severe internal bleeding due to an ectopic pregnancy. At the time, I believed very strongly as an atheist. My mother raised me as a Buddhist, but at thirteen years old, I became an atheist. I was born with good looks and felt I had been raised in a fortune cookie. I was extremely arrogant, vain, conceited and very materialistic. At the hospital, I was screaming in pain. It had been very early when I had come into the ER, about three in the morning.
A boy there had broken his arm somehow and was frightened by my screams. An intern of a sort tried to stop me from screaming, but to no avail. He was angry with me and I could tell he was truly upset. I don't why this pissed me off, but it did. I said to myself.... "I will show him. I will just leave—go away in my mind." I knew I could do this because I had done so oftentimes as a child growing up. (due to molestation) So, away I went. I was in such pain that I just let go.
I could hear everyone in the room. I heard someone say, "We are losing her!" I could hear the machine on my heart start to go "bbbbllllllllleee." Then the same voice that had said, "We are losing her," said, "Shit, she is .......... " and I don't know what happened after that.
Next, I was floating over the table where I had been lying. I was quite happy with myself. Quite smug, in fact. "I sure did scare them," I was proudly thinking. When the doctor started to call aloud again… "We are losing her, people!" I felt a frightening pull on… I guess I can say …. on my soul, or spirit. I was being pulled down—and I knew it was "down" for some odd reason. I landed with great ease on, or in, another dimension. And it was not at all Earth-like. I was alone at first and then I sensed that a presence had joined me. But I was not sure who or what it was. I started to feel afraid. This place was new to me. My mind had never been here before. I believe I closed my eyes in hopes that I would be returned to the hospital, but somehow I knew I was not going to be.
When my eyes opened again, I was in hell—in a certain chamber of hell. There were horrible smells and such darkness, one can only feel. I saw people in chains and people being tortured— and in such horrible ways, that I still cannot talk about it. I hated that place and wanted to leave it desperately, but could not. I stayed there watching and smelling and feeling all the pain and horror of that place.
Later, there was a voice, just a voice. It was familiar, but I knew I didn't know who He was. He spoke simply and very directly to me. He explained to me that this place that I was in was no longer for people like me. He said that before He was born, everyone that died came to this place. There had been no hope. But since His death, He had done something. I don't recall what He said He had done, but he said that since then, now when people die, they come and wait in a different place, not here. I really did not understand, because I was really afraid. I did not want to be there.
The voice then asked, "Do you love him?" And I clearly remember thinking, "Why are you asking me this…you already know everything." I got no reply. Just silence. At this, I became very annoyed. Then suddenly I was being pulled again, only this time, it felt like I was being pulled up. When I stopped, I saw people around me, but not real close—like in the distance. There were people I knew, and people I knew that I also did not know. It was really strange. The feeling was so nice and easy. Tranquil. I was so intensely in my mind at that moment—it's as if I knew everything.
Then... I looked up, or ahead of me (I'm not sure which) and saw the most beautiful sight I have ever seen! They were (this sounds corny) pearl gates! Huge gates made of pearls! The gates were closed, but as I was looking, they started to open up, towards me. Inside I could see streets paved with gold, with rows of mansions upon more mansions covered with diamonds and glittering green stones. It was brilliant! When my eyes had had their fill, the scene went blank (not dark) and the same voice asked me…."Well, Linda, what do you believe?" At that, I woke up and took a deep breath in. I opened my eyes to a nurse and, with the most beautiful feeling I have ever had, I smiled at her and told her that there is a God, "and He loves you!" I have believed in Him ever since. I have changed my whole life because of it. Although extremely reclusive because of the sensitivity I now have, I am learning to reconnect. I had not been able to speak of this until just recently. Being as extremely reclusive as I am has allowed me the time to be in constant study. It's strange that I didn't get any faith out of this experience—but it instilled in me a lot of fear of the Lord.