Let's talk about heaven.
Have you ever read something and it made your world stop? A quote, a bible verse, an email or a text message that just makes you rethink every aspect of your life? Well this is what this quote by Keith Green did to me.
“If your heart takes more pleasure in reading novels, or watching TV, or going to the movies, or talking to friends, rather than just sitting alone with God and embracing Him, sharing His cares and His burdens, weeping and rejoicing with Him, then how are you going to handle forever and ever in His presence with no TV, movies, or singles’ retreats? You’d be bored to tears in heaven, if you’re not ecstatic about God now!
How could God invite you to heaven, when the most exciting thing to do all day is gaze upon His glorious face, if you’re not in heaven right here on earth when you’re alone with Him? Do you think that after you die, suddenly you’ll be in heaven and “presto!” all at once you’re not going to like wordly things anymore? All of a sudden you’ll love more than anything else just to hang out with God, when you couldn’t stand being along with Him even 20 minutes a day?” -Keith Green
I have yet to meet a person when given a choice said they would rather be in hell than in heaven. Most people I know believe in heaven and want to make it in someday. The Bible says that a man’s imagination can’t fathom how glorious heaven is. The closest thing we have is the book of Revelations and John’s experience in heaven. This is a small passage, but I urge you read this book for the most awe-inspiring descriptions of heaven!
“Immediately I was in the Spirit, and a throne was standing in heaven with someone seated on it! And the one seated on it was like jasper and carnelian in appearance, and a rainbow looking like it was made of emerald encircled the throne. In a circle around the throne were twenty-four other thrones, and seated on those thrones were twenty-four elders. They were dressed in white clothing and had golden crowns on their heads. From the throne came out flashed of lighting and roaring and crashes of thunder. Seven flaming torches, which are the seven spirits of God, were burning in front of the throne and in front of the throne was something like a sea of glass, like crystal. In the middle of the throne and around the throne were four living creatures full of eyes in the front and back…..Each one of the four living creatures had six wings and was full of eyes all around and inside. They never rest day or night, saying “Holy Holy Holy is the Lord God, the All-Powerful, Who has was and who is, and who is still to come!” – Revelations Chapter 4
The most rich and glorious thing I’ve seen on this Earth is the Palace of Versailles – gilded gold walls, marble and mirrors decorate every possible surface, oozing extravagance and wealth. In my humble and naïve opinion, that’s just a miniature, man-made version of a small portion of heaven. I can’t physically comprehend the glorious infinity of heaven, but as a human, I still strive to imagine it sometimes – what it would look like, what we would do. I mean, have you ever wondered, “What exactly are we going to do for an eternity after we die?”
According to Apostle John, all we’ll do is worship God…For an eternity. Confession: sometimes, if church passes the two hour mark, I start getting antsy and annoyed. Two hours in God’s house and I start to get antsy?! Eternity is two hours multiplied by infinity!
Our life is filled with earthly pleasures and time-fillers. For example, when I get bored or have a few minutes free, my instinct is usually to check Instagram, read a book, watch TV, or take a nap. It’s usually not to read the Bible, pray, visit a sick church member or some other Godly use of my time. That terrifies me. Why do I turn to temporary, short-term, material pleasures that can disappear in the blink of an eye? Why don’t I always yearn for one more minute of reading my Bible or conversing with God in prayer?
I’m currently reading Crazy Love: Overwhelmed by a relentless God, by Francis Chan. In one chapter, he talks about his wife’s grandmother – a woman so in love with God, she would wake up before dawn every morning to kneel by her bed and pray for hours. Throughout the day, she would look longingly toward that worn place, yearning for morning to come for that time spent with the Lord.
I want that. I want a love so deep and consuming that I cease to want all earthly things and just strive to honor and serve God with every breath I take. I’m sad to admit that I’m far from that. So, I continuously pray that God puts this love in my heart, because I’ve come to learn that as a human I can’t do it on my own. I pray for a tiny grain of his love to settle into my soul. A love like that doesn’t happen overnight though; it takes years of commitment, personal sacrifice, trust and bonding. After all, that is why we are given a lifetime on this Earth – to fall madly and deeply in love with Him and instill that love to others in the world.
Otherwise, heaven will remain nothing but a distant dream, forever.
“He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.” -Revelation 21:4
PS. Shout-out to the Prayer Works Café – a place where you can post a prayer request or share testimonies. What a great idea!