- Published: 18 April 2017
- ISBN: 9780143770428
- Imprint: Penguin
- Format: Trade Paperback
- Pages: 304
- RRP: $35.00
Surrounded by Spirit
A message from Joe
It’s very rare for me to cancel a show.
The only times it has happened in recent years has been due to extreme weather (snow prevented me from getting to Queenstown and Te Anau a couple of years ago) or if I’m really, really sick.
I felt bad when I had to cancel an Auckland show due to having a terrible ear infection, but it was so painful there was no way I could have gone on stage. When I pulled the plug, I made sure the show was rescheduled as soon as possible.
Just about everyone who had booked for the cancelled show was able to make it to the rescheduled one, but a handful of original ticket-holders couldn’t come so there were a few seats available.
Two of those seats went to a couple called John and Kristen (although I didn’t know their names at the time) who got a reading from me. They were sitting at the back of the theatre and I could barely see them, but their family members started coming through, so I began by going to Kristen first. After a while a man in spirit, who was clearly there for John, got my attention.
I was given the name Joe, and John confirmed that was his brother.
‘Your brother is telling me to tell you that he didn’t get a chance to say goodbye,’ I said.
It’s not unusual for me to say those words – people are rarely able to say their farewells to their loved ones before they pass over, and this guy was no exception.
‘He loves you,’ I found myself telling John. Again, this is often one of the first things spirit want me to say to their family members in the audience. They are so thrilled to have the chance to do that.
I knew the guy in spirit had a problem with his heart, and I was also aware of his father being there with him. ‘Their relationship had been severed in life – his dad put too much pressure on him,’ I told John. ‘But they’re together now, everything’s good.’
All I could see of Joe in spirit was a bit of brown skin, so I knew he was Maori or Polynesian. I couldn’t see his face. But I could tell that his grandmother was snuggled under his arm – they were obviously very close.
Then Joe said something that was unusual. ‘I’m safe from prying eyes,’ he told me. ‘I’ve got my privacy.’
I didn’t have a clue what that meant. But that’s quite common – spirit often tell me random things I don’t understand. Hopefully the families get what I’m on about, and what I was saying did seem to make sense to John. But it wasn’t until I was starting to wrap up the reading that it became clear to me and everyone in the audience why he had mentioned privacy.
Out of nowhere I heard Joe, the guy in spirit, saying, ‘Jonah Lomu and the All Blacks. Say it! Say Jonah Lomu and the All Blacks!’
I didn’t know why I needed to say that, but I got the feeling that it was important, so I did as I was told.
‘Why is he telling me to say Jonah Lomu and the All Blacks?’ I asked John.
When I got the answer to that I was gobsmacked.
John’s brother, the guy in spirit, was rugby legend Jonah Lomu.
‘I never called my brother Jonah, I always called him Joe,’ said John, who was in tears by this stage.
Wow. Talk about being stopped in your tracks. I had met Jonah Lomu on several occasions – I had been out for meals with him thanks to contacts I had through his former wife Fiona – but I had no idea that this guy coming through in spirit was Jonah until he told me to say his name.
‘This is such an honour for me,’ I told John. ‘Your brother was not only a great rugby player, he was a great man who did so much for people. Thank you so much for blessing us all tonight by bringing your brother to us. This is just incredible.’
But it got even more amazing. I had been taking along a couple of copies of my most recent book, Soul Secrets, to my shows, and handing them out to people in the audience. Sometimes I gave one to somebody I had just read for, other times a copy of the book went to a person I picked out simply because spirit told me to.
Soul Secrets is full of words of wisdom relating to all aspects of spirituality and life in general, such as dealing with grief and learning to accept loss. I would choose a couple of the short passages at random and mark them, trusting in spirit that they would have special meaning for the recipient of the book.
After doing the reading for John, I asked if I could give him a copy of Soul Secrets. But this time, instead of simply marking a couple of the excerpts, I felt compelled to write a message in it.
I knew it wasn’t me writing the words, it was Jonah. They read, ‘I love you my brother, until we meet again.’ Only what I actually wrote was ‘untill’ we meet again, instead of ‘until’. That was Jonah’s doing, not mine – my spelling may not be the best but I do know how to spell until.
‘Hey, your brother can’t spell,’ I told John.
‘That would be right,’ said John. ‘He sucked at schoolwork.’
When he realised what I had written, John was overcome with emotion again. The words I had used were exactly what Jonah had written on one of those giant keys John had been given when he turned 21. And as I had just done, Jonah had spelled the word ‘untill’. But it wasn’t a mistake. The two letter Ls at the end of the word were meant to look like the number 11 – which was the number on Jonah’s All Blacks shirt, and his lucky number.
Talk about amazing.
To be honest, I have always been sceptical about all this sort of stuff, and I only went along to Kelvin’s show to keep my wife happy. She’s right into it, and was hoping to get a message from one of her family members who had recently died. I was just there to support her. I didn’t believe that Kelvin or anyone else could talk to people who have passed over.
I was slouched down in my seat when Kelvin started talking to us and I wasn’t sure if he was talking to me or the guy behind me. Even when he mentioned the name Joe I thought, Nah, that can’t be for me, even though I always called my brother Joe from a very young age.
But then when he started saying some of the other stuff I started thinking, Okay . . . And when he started saying Jonah Lomu, I couldn’t believe it. I was in a daze actually.
How could Kelvin have known that I was in the audience? How could he have known that I called Jonah Joe? He couldn’t have. That was pretty amazing.
But because I am naturally quite sceptical, I was still feeling a bit iffy about everything. However, seeing what he wrote in the book sealed everything for me. I looked at it and went, Wow. I just could not believe that Kelvin could have known what my brother wrote on the key for me, and used the exact same words. Or that Jonah had spelled ‘until’ with two Ls. That might seem like a small detail, but to me it was massive. It’s the kind of thing you can’t guess at. It’s the same with his name. Not many people knew I called him Joe – that was something quite personal between us.
It’s hard to explain how I felt after that – it was complete disbelief really. My mum and other family members have always been interested in that kind of stuff – they do things like card readings – but I was never into it. So I was quite stunned.
The other stuff he said that night made sense too, like about my dad. And it was interesting that he mentioned that Jonah was with our grandmother. That would be my mum’s mother; they were very close. He spent a couple of years living with her in Tonga.
The reading with Kelvin has changed my views. It has made me think about what happens when you pass away. I do sometimes pick up the book he gave me and look through it, and think about what it says.
There is no way in this world that Kelvin could have known those things about me and Jonah. The only thing I can think of that explains why Kelvin wrote what he did is that he had to be getting the information from my brother. There is no logical explanation otherwise.
Wow, what a huge privilege, doing a reading with Jonah Lomu, of all people. What a legend the guy was, and an all-round nice person too. I was completely blown away.
This reading was so special to me, not just because it was with a truly great man, but because it helped to make someone who was a self-confessed sceptic think differently. John Lomu, being the nice guy that he clearly is, came along to my show that night to support his wife even though he didn’t believe that it was possible for people who have died to be able to communicate with us. He walked out later that night with his eyes opened to a whole new world of possibilities thanks to his bro coming through.
It is so cool to know that what I said to him has made him have a bit of a re-think about what to believe in. I guess it is quite hard to ignore it when your brother is giving the medium information that is so very specific to yourselves.
With a bit of luck, John was not the only person in the audience that night who left believing that we don’t cease to exist when we die. And hopefully lots of you reading this now will take heart from this, whatever your beliefs or understanding about life and death.
Here’s what I believe: I believe that each of us is a soul created as a speck of light by our Creator. At the very beginning of our existence, we sit down with the Creator to map out our journey through life, the ultimate goal being to learn lots of lessons and eventually become angels so we can stay in an amazing place full of love called Heaven.
We decide the lessons we need to learn and plan everything that is going to happen to us. We’re then born as physical beings, and off we go through life, experiencing that whole load of different situations we chose with the Creator. Along the way we should be learning the lessons we set ourselves and if we don’t tick them all off in this lifetime, we come back for another go at it, and another, until they have sunk in.
When each lifetime on this earth comes to an end, we leave our physical bodies and our souls once again become specks of light that cross into the white light on the other side. We hang out in Heaven until we are ready to come back here and continue on our journey towards learning those lessons and earning our angel’s wings.
While we are in Heaven having a bit of a rest – or an intermission between lifetimes, so to speak – we are still able to be with the loved ones we left behind on this side, just not in the same form as we were. Those physical bodies have done their job and they’re gone. But our soul is still the same, and if our loved ones still on this side of life think about us, we are drawn to them. We see what they are doing, we can hear what they are saying, and we can communicate with them, if they are up for it.
The trouble is, they don’t always know we are there. Only a few of them – people like me – are able to see us. But they don’t need to be able to see us to know we are with them. Often, they can feel us. And if they can’t to start with, then practice can make perfect. Meditation can help to open up the channels to connect with spirit. This is something I have gone into in depth in my previous books, particularly Finding the Path and Bridging the Gap.
Some people struggle to believe that dead people are around them in spirit. It goes against what they may have been taught, or they are sceptical because they don’t have what they consider to be concrete evidence. They want proof.
That’s why I’m here. By doing readings and passing on messages that could only have come from someone who has died – like the misspelling of the word ‘until’ that had such an effect on John – I am hoping to convince as many people as possible that their loved ones haven’t gone for good. They’re just in another place, in another form.
We can’t see the wind, yet we know it exists. We can feel it, we can see the effects it has. It is the same with spirit. You may not be able to see them, or sense them particularly well, but trust me, they’re there. We are surrounded by spirit and man, would I love it if everybody could start to embrace this fact. Like John Lomu hopefully has.
Thanks for your help with that, Jonah.
My mother has the tenacity of a bulldog, looks like June Cleaver, and curses like a truck driver.
The wind and heavy rain coming right off the sea rattled the cottage windows and pounded on the glass.
In 1867, a journalist named Frederick Wilson published an account of his visit to Sydney’s Central Police Court, on George Street.
These days the origin of the universe is explained by proposing a Big Bang, a single event that instantly brought into being all the matter from which everything and everyone are made.
The place looked like something out of Amityville: all paint-chipped walls, dusty windows, and menacing shadows cast by moonlight.
‘For young people who have never been through any of those things, or lived in a time when they were happening, this seems just frightful . . .
I heard them long before I saw them, the throaty rumble of their Second World War engines reverberating in my hearing aids as I sat outside on the morning of my 100th birthday.