Heaven

SPEND MORE TIME DAYDREAMING

 

I enjoy planning and thinking about trips.

The anticipation and the preparation are part of the fun.

Time spent daydreaming about an upcoming vacation or a quick getaway, not only builds excitement – it brings some of the joy of this trip into life now

I think about . .

Places we will visit

Restaurants where we will eat

The company of friends we will enjoy

The churches where we will worship

The books I will read

Sleeping in – staying up

And the lack of deadlines to meet

Why not take a similar approach to our impending entrance into eternity?

As Christians, we believe we will be with Christ in heaven, but it does not seem real – so we give very little thought to this great reality.

There is much to think about and to be excited over:

Seeing Jesus!

The feel of his arms around us

Listening to the Heavenly host – and singing with them

Being perfected

Knowing that we actually do love God with ALL our heart, mind, soul and strength

Reuniting with loved ones

Conversation and a meal with Moses, David, Mary, Paul, Spurgeon, Jonathan Edwards or any other believer you admire

If anything is worth daydreaming over, it is eternal life with our Savior in the new heaven and the new earth.

Add some anticipation to your worship and to your life – the plans that God has made for you are worth it!

 

START CELEBRATING NOW

One day I will leave all of the troubles of this world

It gets better.

On that day, I will enter a world perfect to the standards of God.

And it gets better.

On that day, I will see Jesus.

Is it possible, yes it gets even better!

On that day when I see Jesus, I will be like him!

Oh certainly my future could never get better than that – but yes it does

On that day, I will be surrounded by people who ALL have the heart and character of Jesus. Everyone will treat one another and love one another just as Jesus does.

Surely that is as good as it gets. No, there is still the greatest of all realities, and it is higher than even all of these.

From that day and forevermore, all I experience will take place within the astounding love between God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit!

Let the Celebrating Begin!

WHAT MORE COULD WE WANT?

My mind reeled

Tears flowed

The thought staggered me

I had to catch my breath

It was too wonderful to take in!

I had heard it many times before. I have said it many times to others. But on this morning it grabbed me in a fresh and powerful way

The Holy Spirit is in the process of glorifying me until I am like Jesus

“Beloved, we are God’s children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is.”  1 John 3:2

As I brought these words to God in praise that morning, I could not go any further.

This is not just an idea; this is a flesh and blood reality. One day I will see Jesus, and on that day my heart and character like his.

I am overwhelmed; the question is not just, ‘How could this be true’.

I must also ask:

How can I ever doubt God’s love for me?

How can I ever think He is far?

How can I be without joy?

How can I not serve Him?

How can I not seek to love Him with all my heart mind, soul and strength?

This is truth worth drinking, not sipping. These are thoughts I should ponder and praise. Here is a hope worthy of my best labors. This is a future worth living for – even dying for.

This God is worth serving and submitting to; He is worth obeying wholeheartedly and following continually.

His trials are worth bearing with praise; and the attacks of enemies, we can withstand.

Temptations deserved to be cast aside; and our disappointments can contain a golden thread of hope.

Even our ordinary days all contain the extraordinary in them.

Before God who has such a wondrous future for me, I gladly exchange my agenda and my desires for His.

Because His desire is that I might not just be with Him, but that I would be like Jesus

What more could we want?!

WE CANNOT STOP IT

Death, it is not an every day subject, yet it is an every day event around us. We know it is real, and sometimes death thrusts itself in our faces, but generally we try to keep the subject of death as far to the edges as possible.

This is natural, because we don’t want death to come within our circle. Death tears, grieves and burdens our hearts. We often hear that death is a part of life. But actually death represents the brokenness that sin has brought to life.

Still, we all face death for ourselves and for everyone we will ever know. Death is hard, but it is both real and we might even say – ordinary.

Whether we think about death or not, it is not just coming, it’s on its way. Preparation for death should be in the mind of each one of us. Thankfully by God’s gracious mercy, death does not need to bring fear (although we cannot help that it brings sadness).

Part of God’s grace is to make very clear what is behind the veil of death. There are only two (eternal) options. The judgment of God in Hell, or the salvation of God in Christ’s Kingdom.

Because of our sin, all of us are driving to judgment. The only deliverance is through Jesus Christ. This is because only Jesus has resolved our sin problem by dying to pay the penalty of that sin. The Bible puts it this way:

“Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life; whoever does not obey the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God remains on him.” John 3:36

Those who trust in Christ as their deliverance have the guarantee of Heaven, because Jesus has fully removed from us the one reason that could keep us from Heaven.

Whatever our eternal destiny, death is a door we all go through. Since we know death is coming, preparation for death should be more central in our attention than the edges of our mind.

And if we are in Christ, death brings wholeness, rest and delight, all of which will never know interruption. This too is worth keeping in the center our minds. 

GETTING TO KNOW THEM ALL

Thinking about eternity in Christ’ Kingdom is a feast of contemplations.
 
Most of all I find rest in knowing all striving against sin will cease; whether they are the sins which pervert our world or the sins which still worm their way into my own heart.
 
Often I imagine the enveloping sound which will come from the heavenly chorus made up of the angels and all who love the Lord. 
 
Or, I take joy in anticipating the full restoration of relationships. Conflicts in the church and between all believers will be healed. 
 
But today, my thoughts traveled the path of what it will be like to enjoy perfect fellowship with each believer who has and will ever live. 
 
Our relationships will not bear the pressures of pride and our souls will be bare of those masks we now collect. Instead we will enjoy heart to heart conversations which flow like playful streams, alive with love and listening. 
 
Oh, how many fascinating people we will get to know and how many amazing stories of grace will bring forth praises to the wonder of God’s sovereignty. 
 
Christ’s kingdom will hold an awesome host of people who will not be faceless crowds. Each face will be that of a dear friend that causes our heart to smile. Every person will be better loved than our dearest loves now, and they will never fail to love us with the full measure of Jesus own stature of love. 
 
Stretching over the timeless ages we will have the pleasure of getting to know the God given uniqueness of all heaven’s citizens. And we will have the fun of sharing endless unmarred experiences together in God’s perfect new creation.