The Story of the Dragonfly


By Karolyn Kelly-O’Keefe

Mary Kelly and Esther Galt were best friends for nearly 50 years. They talked about many things: their homes and families, their faith in God and his promise of Heaven. The two friends had a favorite story about a dragonfly – just like the ones that buzzed around the Galt’s pond each summer in a distant meadow.

In the story, two small water-bugs were sitting on the bottom of a pond. They had noticed how – one by one – other bugs left the pond and never came back. The two water-bugs were curious about this, so they promised that when one of them left, he would return to tell the other what happens next.

A few weeks later, one of the water-bugs started to climb up a stalk of grass. Before he knew it, he was standing above the water’s surface, where he could see and feel the sun’s warmth for the first time. He was amazed when a pair of glistening wings popped open on his back as he was transformed into a dragonfly. Effortlessly, he spread his new wings, flying above the pond and beyond. He looked in wonder at the countryside beneath him, which he hadn’t known existed. All around him were indescribably beautiful sights, sounds, smells and colors.

Suddenly, the dragonfly recalled his promise to the water-bug at the bottom of the pond. Now that he had wings, the dragonfly couldn’t go back under water again. He realized he didn’t know how to begin to explain the miracle that had taken place, nor could his friend ever understand. The dragonfly looked ahead and continued to soar joyfully into the sunny, summer sky.

Mary and Esther believed the dragonfly story explained why no one returns from Heaven to tell others how glorious it is – for it would be impossible to convey – even to your oldest and dearest friend.

Shortly after Esther died, Mary went to her friend’s house. She stood on the porch, where they had sat together so often, sharing all the good times and the sad. Mary missed Esther so much she felt as if her heart might break. Just then, a dragonfly flew by, landing on the wall near Mary. The dragonfly sat under the window of the room where Esther had spent time each morning praying and reading The Bible.

Mary believed God had used the dragonfly to send his blessed assurance that Heaven does indeed await us. For the rest of her life, Mary shared this story of God’s faithfulness with many others. Today, Esther and Mary’s children and grandchildren continue to tell of our Lord’s great love and his glorious acts.

“Publish his glorious acts throughout the earth. Tell everyone about the amazing things he does.” –Psalm 96:3

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