Friday, July 15, 2011

Good news: All the answers you ever wanted to know about Heaven will be revealed to you.

If I had known where my conversation with my five year old was going to go tonight I probably would have spent some time preparing for it. No, it wasn't the Birds and Bees discussion yet. Thank you LORD! :) It was the "Heaven" conversation. You know, the "What's this Heaven place all about?" question.

Ahhhh... :)

It was already well past Preston's bedtime but he was enjoying talking about what kindergarten was going to be like so much that I didn't want to rush to get him to sleep tonight. The bus, recess, friends, games, book, etc. etc. He was so excited about every little thing that was going to be a part of his future that he couldn't even lay still. I managed to stop our conversation and prayed our routine "good night" prayer. His mind was still buzzing with all the things he had to look forward to, and then he hit me with the question, "Mommy, What's Heaven like?"

I stumbled to think about where to start. There's so much he doesn't understand. There's so much I don't understand. I braced myself...

Me: "It's a perfect place we get to go to when we die and we get to see God face and face and live there forever... and it will be PERFECT!" :)

Preston: "Will chairs knock over there?" (seriously...he asked me that) :)

Me: "Ummmmm...I don't think so"

Preston: "Will the chairs scoot around there?" (what in the world were they talking about at VBS today?) ;)

Me: "Hmm...good question. I guess we'll find out when we get there."

The questions continued and I did the best I could to answer them, but realized I really had to just keep saying, "Well, I am not sure. I just know it will be perfect there".

Preston is my "questions" kid. He's the one with a million "why?" and "how?" questions for every little statement I ever make. His questions tonight ranged from "how long is forever?" to "How big is God?" and on and on it went. An hour later I managed to escape and make my way out to the living room, feeling a sense of relief that I wouldn't have to answer any more questions that I did not have a sufficient answer to.

Five minutes later he came out to the living room saying he can't sleep and then chimed in with more questions, "Does God have power IN him?" and "Is he scary?".... uhhh...

I wish I could tell you that I had all the right answers and quoted all the right scriptures and all that good stuff. If I told you that I would be lying. I stumbled through all my answers because I knew that none of them could possibly be making any sense in his precious five year old brain. Some of the stuff I knew the answers to, but I didn't know the "why" that followed. "Hmm...good question. I am not sure. I don't know, but I think..." The questions finally stopped. (whew)

The truth is, Preston is not the first person to ask about the chairs in heaven...and every little single part of Heaven, for that matter. We all wonder, don't we? In our humanness we search for answers in terms of what we understand here on earth. In Matthew 20 we read about the mother of Zebedee’s sons who went to Jesus, asking that he "grant that one of these two sons of (hers) may sit at (his) right and the other at (his) left in the kingdom.”

His answer was not the "yes" or "no" she was looking for. He said to her, "These places belong to those for whom they have been prepared by my Father.” He just leaves her guessing, so I suppose I don't have to feel too bad, then, for not answering all of Preston's questions with a firm "yes" or "no", right?

We cannot know most of the details of what Heaven is like. It is out of our realm of understanding, as long as we are here on earth. God gives us glimpses, but never a complete picture. This is a VERY good thing, when you think about it. Do you want to go to another place like earth when you leave here and live there for ETERNITY, or would you rather go to a place that is so completely out of this world that you cannot even find words here on earth to explain it? Well, you don't get to decide. God decided for you, because HE knows what is best for YOU. He made you, for crying out loud. Heaven is not like earth.

Who can understand an angel if he has never seen one? How can we, as humans, know what a "soul" looks like?
Faith comes in to play here. There are just some things we cannot understand. IF it were something we needed to understand God would reveal it to us, so I am operating out of the assumption that if God wanted me to understand it all he would have made a way for that to happen. We trust in a God who has it all figured out, we seek Him for answers and we rest in him when the answer is not completely clear to us...yet. Someday we will get to Heaven and be like, "WOAH! Earth was like a really bad joke compared to this!!! SAWEET!! Thank you LORD!" :)

God, you created me, you created the world, you created Heaven and the spiritual things unseen (to us). We believe that you see EVERYTHING...even the things that we cannot. We take you at your word that you have good things in store for us when we believe in you and put our trust in you.

You made our minds with the unique ability to seek knowledge and retain it. Our minds want more. We want more knowledge, more understanding, and more answers. We work hard here on earth to make some sense out of you, out of our lives, and out of this world. We seek you for our answers. We turn to your word to develop our understanding of who you are, and we look to see where you are at work around us, in an attempt to encounter you.

We thank you for the times when you offer us knowledge and give us understanding for some of the things that are from the heavenly realm. We love when you reveal new things to us and we catch a glimpse of who you are. And yet, what we comprehend is only a sliver of all that you have done, are doing, and will continue to do.

"I have spoken to you of earthly things and you do not believe; how then will you believe if I speak of heavenly things?" ~John 3:12

There are some things we just would not get even if you did explain them to us. Your ways are higher, deeper, more meaningful than we can fathom. Even still, you allow each of us, with all of our limitations, to step into your bigger plan here on Earth. We are honored to join you in your plan, and we are humbled that one day we will live with you and experience you in all your glory. On that day we'll be overwhelmed with a feeling never felt before, and for the first time ever we'll say, "THIS FINALLY makes sense! THIS is HOME!! My soul is FINALLY completely at peace for the FIRST TIME EVER forever and ever and ever. amen!"
"For this world is not our permanent home; we are looking forward to a home yet to come." Hebrews 13:14

This world is not our home, Lord. We are here for a short time to do the work you have called us to do here, but THIS is not our home. Some days I am more grateful for that simple, yet profound, fact than others. I know that when I see you face to face, and I sense the peace in my heart and soul that I have never completely known while here on earth that I will comprehend that close to you is where I belong. Amen.

The good news: All the answers you ever wanted about Heaven will be revealed to you.
The bad news: It won't happen while you are here on Earth. :)

The good news: If you needed to know everything, God would reveal it to you.
The bad news: As long as you are here on Earth there will be a slightly irritating longing for more, because THIS (earth) is not all that you were made for.

The best news: God has prepared a place for you!!
If you are a believer, who has asked God into your heart, and asked that He forgive you of your sins, there is a place especially designated for you in Heaven!!
You can take a lot of comfort in that.

"In my Father's house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. 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. You know the way to the place where I am going." ~John 14:2-4

No comments: