Maria Polack hadn’t been feeling too well the night she got up to use the bathroom – but she could not have known that due to a fall which rendered her unconscious she would in fact leave this world and have an encounter with Jesus. This is her story.
I was born in Portugal, during the time that it was under the rule of a dictator. My parents were Catholic, but I had little interest in the Catholic church, because the dictatorship and the Catholic church were linked in many peoples’ eyes. From a very young age I loved God, and wanted to know about the Holy Spirit, but nobody in my parish church seemed to be able to tell me anything, so I went around searching. It was years later however before God broke through into my life in a way I could not have believed in a thousand years.
It was a typical warm Portuguese night, but I had woken up and knew that I needed to visit the bathroom. I had reached the age of 26, and had been feeling unwell for some time. Sometimes I felt faint, and on some occasions I actually did faint. The problem was that I knew that if I got up, I would probably wake my parents. I was staying with them at the time, and I knew that they needed their sleep. In the end though, like it or not, I had to get up. I made my way to the bathroom as silently as I could, closing all the doors behind me, so as to make as little noise as possible.
I am still not to clear about exactly what happened next, but I must have stumbled as I entered the bathroom, or perhaps I fainted again, but the result was that I hit my head hard on a marble corner in the bathroom. I had fainted and had become unconscious before, and since. But this time was very different from those other times.
Suddenly I found myself going through a large tunnel, at great speed. What could be happening? I was travelling so fast that I could hear a loud ‘whooshing’ sound as I moved along. As I travelled, I realised that I was moving towards a source of light. This light was more beautiful than anything that I had ever seen on Earth. It was a wonderful golden colour – more beautiful than anything I have ever experienced even on the sunniest day in Portugal.
Then I went through the entrance where the light was. The atmosphere was totally serene, and I was now surrounded completely by this wonderful golden light. At this point I had no idea what was happening to me, but I felt safe secure and very peaceful. Then I felt a Presence near to me, and realised that it was coming from the middle of this wonderful light. The light was very intense, although it did not hurt my eyes. I was aware of so much love surrounding me, a type of love that I have never experienced before. I knew that this love was far greater than anything that any human could generate, however much they tried. I began to realise that the Presence within this light knew everything that there was to know about me, and yet loved me totally. I could not see who it was that was in the centre of this light, although I guessed by now that it must be Jesus. This was strange, because although I had been brought up in the Catholic faith, God had played little or no part in my life, although I had always wanted to know more about Him.
Then, my whole life started to be shown to me. I saw the good parts and the bad parts. I did not feel condemned, even when I saw myself do or think things that I should not have. I knew that He understood me, and loved me, in spite of everything that I had ever done. We started to have a conversation together, although no words were spoken. It was just a conversation within the mind. I could hear His words in my head, and I found it easy to communicate in this way. When I saw myself doing the things that I should not have done, I felt very sad and repentant, especially as I was experiencing so much of His love at the time. I felt consoled, and I did not ever want to leave the place where I was, even though I had a young child who obviously needed my care and attention at that time.
I was aware of other things around me. I think I was standing near to a tree, but I was concentrating too much on the Lord and what He was saying and showing me to bother too much about what was around me. Then He said that I must go back – it wasn’t time for me to be with Him permanently yet. I sensed that He had tremendous authority, mixed with this wonderful love. I wanted to do what He told me to, although in another way I would have loved to have simply stayed where I was.
Then I made the journey back to my body. It was a strange experience as I re-entered my body, and it was not very pleasant. I felt my spirit coming back into my body again, and I felt restricted, like being put into a box! And of course my head was very painful, due to the knock that I had given it, which had caused me to lose consciousness. I was still lying there on the floor where I fell, but now my father and mother were also there, standing quietly, and watching me. In spite of the fact that I had tried not to make a noise when going to the bathroom my mother had suddenly woken up, and had immediately sensed that something was wrong. She went around the house, trying to find out why she was feeling so disturbed. Then she found me, lying in the bathroom. She could not lift me on my own, so she called my father to come and help.
Dad came into bathroom and moved me, so that I was lying on my back. After that they wanted to call for an ambulance, but they both felt rooted to the spot. I am very close to my Dad, and he told me afterwards that he sensed that I was somewhere else, and that they should not attempt to move me. Although my parents at the time only had a formal interest in religion, they are now both born again believers.
I have to admit that I did not really want to leave that place – it had been so lovely to be in the Lord’s Presence. The wonderful thing was that my symptoms stopped, and I quickly returned to good health. Since then of course I have had other illnesses. On some occasions, as I have prayed, the Lord has healed me instantly, in a way that could not be explained by any other means.
The intensity of the love that I felt from the Lord when I was in His presence has given me a deep love for others. I feel their pain, and that is not always easy to bear. It is like walking around with no shoes on! But you can’t have an experience like that and remain unchanged.
Although I shared my experience with my parents, it was a long time before I started to tell anyone outside of my family. I felt that people would not understand what I was saying, or that they would feel that I was crazy. But I now feel it is important to tell my story, because so many people just don’t realise just how much God loves them. I know that people need to understand that there is a life beyond the body, and that our lives do not end at the grave.
The true story of Maria Polack is included, with kind permission, in the free e-book BEYOND THE FINAL FRONTIER which includes 27 similar true stories, and may be freely read and downloaded from this web site.