Discover the Book - July 8, 2013

 

Thoughts on Heaven

As the end of days approaches, you can find hope as you taste the joys of heaven!

"In My Father's house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you."

-John 14:2, emphasis added

When you think of heaven, what comes to mind? As for me, thoughts of heaven always lead back to sweet memories of my being a little boy in Sunday school and singing this song: I'm going to Heaven, can't wait; Going to see Jesus, can't wait; Heaven is wonderful, bright and fair, Praise the Lord, I'm going there!

A childlike wonder permeates the minds and hearts of the very young-especially when it comes to things of the Lord. Thus, little lambs can joyfully think: Can't wait to get to heaven! But as lambs grow into sheep, the manifold distractions of this world can crowd out that joy, childlike wonder begins to fade, and that sweet song of a soft heart changes to: I'm going to Heaven, but it can wait; going to see Jesus, but He can wait; Heaven is wonderful, bright and fair, praise the Lord-but it can wait! In other words: Heaven with Jesus sounds wonderful, but let's hold it off for a little while!

Isn't that how we become as we age? Usually, not until we are approaching the end of our life do our thoughts go back to: Can't wait to get to heaven! It is that in-between time when we are at the greatest risk of heaven losing its wonder in our minds and hearts. If we're honest, most of us would say that we are hoping for heaven, but not just yet. Why is that?

Dave Hunt comments,

For most Christians heaven is a place they desire to reach eventually, but not until they have lived out their full days on earth. Their hopes, ambitions, and interests, contrary to what Christ taught and the early Church lived, are really bound up in the life they aspire to live in this world. Heaven is a distant and unreal destination they reluctantly expect to reach at the end of life, but it is not desired before then. To be suddenly raptured to heaven would be, for most Christians, an unwelcome interruption of their earthy plans and ambitions.[1]

Most of us have thus forgotten how to embrace the awe of being in our Father's house! Restoring that childlike wonder is my goal for this week's devotionals. And it is my heartfelt prayer that when you have finished on Saturday that you will, with joy, be singing:

This World Is Not My Home

This world is not my home
I'm just a passing through
My treasures are laid up
Somewhere beyond the blue
The angels beckon me
From heaven's open door
And I can't feel at home
In this world anymore.

-Albert E. Brumley (1905-1977)

Would the Rapture be an unwelcome interruption of the plans you have for this life, or your greatest joy? Are you an earth dweller at heart, or a pilgrim who longs for "heaven's open door"?

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