Do you actually believe “heaven is for real”? Do you think about it often? Is it something you look forward to?
Those were questions some friends asked at our house last week. Our conversation left me pondering, “Why don’t we think about heaven more often?”
I know it’s hard to think about heaven when we barely have time to think about getting through the day. Looking ahead to next weekend, next month or maybe to next year is about as far ahead as we can see.
And besides, heaven is just so hard to imagine. Are there really streets of gold? How does eternity feel? Making all things new? Heaven is difficult to grasp.
Before leaving earth, though, Jesus talked about heaven to comfort his disciples and to give them courage. And he put “heaven” in simple enough words for me to understand too (John 14).
He said that…
- Heaven is his Father’s home.
- He was going home to heaven.
- He will prepare a place for us there.
- He will bring us home to be with him.
I can get that.
There’s a lot I don’t understand about heaven, but I can understand that heaven is my spiritual Father’s home. Heaven is the home we were made for. It’s God’s dwelling place, the “storehouse of his bounty.” It’s his sanctuary where he sits enthroned.
God wants me to go home to be with him. Just like any parent wants a child to return home. He gave us the longing for home. He made us desire his presence.
No wonder the soul feels homesick for heaven.
“If I find in myself desires which nothing in this world can satisfy, the only logical explanation is that I was made for another world.” C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity
Our time on earth is simply our journey home. We are on a journey to live in his presence. It’s a walk home that we can begin even now on earth.
But instead of walking home together, we merge into the fast lane leading to meaningless. Instead of fulfilling the desire for God’s presence, we distract ourselves. We suffocate our soul’s desires by satisfying other desires.
- We focus on what we can actually see.
- We dig our roots in and make ourselves at home on earth.
- We numb the longing by staying busy.
- We build bigger houses and store up more treasures.
- We become nearsighted as we get through the day, the month, the year.
And we forget about heaven. We forget about the longing. We forget that we can get a taste of heaven even now. We forget we’re on our way home.
If we never feel homesick for heaven, it’s a sign that we’re too much at home on earth.
I don’t know about you, but I really do believe that heaven is for real. There’s a lot I don’t understand about it, but I do know that I want to go home to my Heavenly Father. And I know it’s going to be better than I can imagine.
I also know that I get distracted.
So today, my friend, I’m writing to remind you–and myself included–that we’re on a journey home.
Let’s remember heaven.
Let’s remember heaven when we’re feeling suffocated by the worries of life. Let’s remember heaven when life hurts, when it’s moving too fast, or when it seems like it’s not going anywhere at all.
Let’s remember heaven when we feel a long way from home.
He’s preparing for our homecoming. He’s guiding us home.
That’s something to look forward to!