It happened again. Another “last time” took place this weekend. We picked my son up from summer camp for the last time. College classes begin in a few weeks along with a whole new season in life. You can read about some other lessons from this summer of “lasts” here and here. The end of seasons are always bittersweet. We celebrate the success but lament the times that will never come again. It got me thinking about heaven.
The comfort of kids growing up and moving on is that you know that other good things are coming. The joys of childhood are over, but there is a new list of joys on the horizon. One day, the love of their lives is going to walk through the door. One day, we will celebrate a dream job that has been secured. One day, we will welcome a grandchild. One day, we will learn how God used them to change a life. Many days, we will all be together at the lake. We find solace in knowing good days…great days are still on the way. But, here is the deal…the best days are coming in Heaven and they will never end.
The problem with that statement is that we know that we should believe it. Good Christians talk about how amazing Heaven will be. Good Christians sing about how amazing Heaven will be. That’s what we do. But, if we are honest, most of us are not that convinced. Heaven doesn’t really move us. Consequently, we focus on arranging for our own happiness here and now the best that we can. We fall into the trap of living like this is it. We build our own little kingdoms instead of God’s kingdom. Why is that? Why are we underwhelmed with Heaven?
Heaven is a little ambiguous and we are not sure it will be that great.
It’s just hard to get your mind around Heaven. In part because we have been given some poor images of Heaven. Never ending worship services or floating around on clouds while baby’s play harps doesn’t motivate me much. I’m not really looking forward to that. John Eldredge calls such pictures more like Hell than Heaven. I agree. Fortunately, it’s going to be a lot better than that. The remedy for a lackluster view of Heaven is the truth about Heaven.
In Heaven, we will live with God. He is there. We are there…dwelling together…seriously.
In Heaven, there will be no sin. Imagine…you will not struggle with sin ever again nor will anyone ever hurt you ever again. No more guilt. No more pain. All that is ugly in this world is over.
In Heaven, there will be continual worship. Yes, it’s true, but the band is really good and it’s only a part of what is going on.
In Heaven, there will be unmatched beauty. Many places in this world can take your breath away. Imagine better and you will explore it forever.
In Heaven, there will be all kinds of people and we will live in true peace. No more racism. No more classes. No more politics. No more war. No more striving against each other.
In Heaven, we will have a meaningful role to play in a perfect Kingdom. We are not just sitting around. Those faithful with their missions today are given greater ones in Heaven.
In Heaven, there will health, life, joy, peace, satisfaction, and rest. Everything we long for, everything we desire is there…perfectly.
In Heaven, there will be a party. I love the picture of the wedding supper of the lamb. Jesus will celebrate with us at a great feast. There will be food and drink and Jesus and all believers of all time. That is going to happen. Can you imagine?
In Heaven, there will never be an end to the joy of it all. You don’t have to pack up and head home after vacation. Monday doesn’t come. The party doesn’t end. The adventure continues…forever.
That is just a tiny glimpse of Heaven, but I think that is worth living for. I think that is worth pointing toward. I think that is worth offering to others. And here is the best part. My description stinks. Heaven is way better. Whether you are experiencing some great days or some bad days, remember that the best days are still to come. If you know Jesus, Heaven is your future.
“And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.” -Jesus, John 14:3