Living on Purpose Grateful for heaven . . . but focusing on God
By Bill Holland
I cannot imagine a more optimistic and exciting thought than going to heaven and spending an eternity with God.
For those who have accepted Jesus Christ as their Savior, this divine promise is a wellspring of joy that confirms that our trials cannot be compared to the glory that awaits us. We should be inspired to fasten this covenant vow to our bathroom mirror so that every morning we can be reminded of God’s love and rejoice for the opportunity to not only know Him in this life, but to worship and adore Him forever.
The fundamentals of our spiritual salvation can be basically described as God’s infinite compassion intervened as a rescue mission of mercy to save us from our sin. Martin Luther is quoted as saying, “I would not give one moment of heaven for all the pleasures and riches of the world, even if it lasted for thousands and thousands of years.”
Our daily routines are filled with distractions and for most of us it’s exhausting just to keep up, but even with the stress and frustration it’s important to remain aware of a much higher reality.
If we only think about the next life when we attend funerals, we are missing a vital component of our relationship with God that can keep us excited and rejuvenated with continual encouragement and joy.
Spending time alone with the Lord was never intended to be an occasional experience or a last resort, but rather to be a constant connection as we strive to understand and obey His instructions.
Walking in God’s presence as a lifestyle is intended to not only transform our spirit, but to also renew our mind and prepare our heart with the anticipation of meeting Him face to face.
Titus 2:13 reminds us, “Looking for that blessed hope and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Savior Jesus Christ.”
One of the many blessings of being a follower of Christ is choosing to live with a sincere attitude of peace and hope. We’ve heard people talk about going to their happy place and actually our Creator desires to abide and communicate within the conscience of those who love Him and who choose to honor Him as the Lord of their life.
However, being attentive to His voice will not come naturally or without serious determination.
Spiritual awareness and intimacy is realized when His desires become our highest priority. Many do not comprehend that as Christians our allegiance is to king Jesus and our citizenship has been transferred from this natural world to the spiritual reality of His kingdom.
This concept of yielding and abandoning our will has everything to do with devoting our life to following the blueprints He has drawn for us. Psalm 14:2 says, “The Lord looked down from heaven upon the children of men, to see if there were any that did understand and seek God.”
As we consider the life after this one, it’s normal to become excited about our heavenly home.
How encouraging it is to imagine that many of our loved ones, our new name, our new body, our inheritance, and citizenship, along with crowns and rewards are all a part of our glorious future.
How wonderful to know that heaven will be filled with endless praise, everlasting joy, perfect peace and contentment without darkness, discouragement, suffering, pain, sickness or sorrow. We are only briefly passing through this world and the only thing we will take with us when we leave is an account of how we lived.
It’s sad but true that everyone is not concerned with their destiny and let us include that no one will enter because they are good or deserve it.
We are graciously given eternal life when we repent, confess, obey, and receive Christ as our Lord who willingly paid our ransom. Billy Graham is quoted as saying, “I will not go to heaven because I am a preacher. I’m going to heaven entirely on the merit of the work of Christ. The most thrilling thing about heaven is that Jesus Christ will be there!”
“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercy has caused us to be born-again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to obtain an inheritance which is imperishable and undefiled and will not fade away, reserved in heaven for you.” (I Peter 1:3-4).