Girls Night In

the blog for single, over-40 women

The Best Is Yet to Come — Part Two

on July 10, 2015

I ended last week’s article with this question: What if this day, today, with each breath and each laugh and each tear it carries isn’t even life at all, but a precursor to something we could never begin to imagine?

HeavenOkay, so let’s take all those thoughts of heaven as a fluffy, cloudy place with white-winged babies playing harps and people lounging around and all those other clichés and throw them out. Likewise all those Hollywood depictions of a beautiful but emotionally stale and lonely existence, where those who have died spend eternity gazing longingly at earth, wishing to be, again, with their “soul mate.” In a word, it’s all hogwash. I know it’s not a pretty word, but it’s descriptive.

Heaven is beyond our imagination. If it weren’t, we’d be miserable. If we had even an inkling of what awaited us, this world and all it has to offer would no longer satisfy. In his book The Sacred Romance, John Eldredge writes: “If for all practical purposes we believe that this life is our best shot at happiness, if this is as good as it gets, we will live as desperate, demanding, and eventually despairing men and women.”

Because, you see, we’re not even alive yet. Listen to the words of the Apostle Paul:

Now we know that if the earthly tent we live in is destroyed, we have a building from God, an eternal house in heaven, not built by human hands. Meanwhile we groan, longing to be clothed with our heavenly dwelling, because when we are clothed, we will not be found naked. For while we are in this tent, we groan and are burdened, because we do not wish to be unclothed but to be clothed with our heavenly dwelling, so that what is mortal may be swallowed up by life.                                                                                                                                     ~ 2 Corinthians 5:1–5 (NIV)

So, it turns out, even on those good days when life seems so wonderful, in God’s eyes we are naked, living in tents, burdened … and still awaiting true life. I am mortal, yes, but I won’t truly be alive until after I die.

Let me plant a mental image in your head: remember that scene at the end of the movie Titanic where the ship is new again and all the people are standing at the entrance to the grand staircase, smiling and alive, and Rose is young and beautiful and dressed in white and walks into the arms of the man she loves and who loved her so much he died for her? That is, in my limited opinion on the subject, the first millionth of a second of our arrival in heaven.

The believers — Christ’s beloved, His bride, those He suffered and died for — enter a room of light and glory and are immediately surrounded by the people we loved and who loved us. They smile and wave us in, barely able to contain their excitement. Then my mom, who died when I was 17, comes over and puts her arm around me.

“You made it,” she says, laughing, but I barely notice. I know it’s her, and I’ve missed her so much, but all I can see is the man standing at the end of this great hall. The One who has always loved me. The One who has been waiting for me since the beginning of time. The One who died for me.

So . . . what will I do when I finally come face-to-face with someone who knows me inside and out and loves me still?

to be continued

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