What's it going to be like in heaven?
Don't you love those kinds of questions? Well, um...uh, I know that there are going to be streets made of gold.
(pause) (pause) (pause)
Mansions. There will be mansions there.
"Hey, Honey! Can you come in here for a minute. Let's ask your Papi, he'll know!"
Hmm....let's see, what else...oh yeah, you will get to see Jesus too! That will be fun!
Questions like this make me wish I would have paid more attention in church or anywhere heaven was being taught and I was in earshot. Thankfully this question came from my 4 year-old daughter and not some person that was challenging my faith. Little did I know that my baby girl was asking all these questions in anticipation of one thing. She was thinking about asking Jesus into her heart.
I am excited to say she did ask Jesus into her heart in July 2009. She simply laid on her back, pulled her knees up and hugged them tightly with her arms, then closed her eyes. After she did a quick rock back and forth in this bodily position, she then stood to say that she was all done. Her 11 year old sister asked her what she was announcing to "be all done with?" She had just asked Jesus into her heart, of course! Why else would she have done all that rocking and getting into a ball position on her back for! Cute as it was, we also chose do it the more traditional way.....like with an out loud prayer and all. = ) I know God heard her silent (inside the heart) prayer. I was just being a MOM, wanting to make sure everything was "just right."
But before Lucia made her decision, she (weeks in advance) was asking questions about eternity. The Bible says that God has placed eternity in our hearts. In other words, we don't need anyone to tell us that we are going to live forever, he already told us that when we were created; he etched that idea into our very being, our soul. In fact, everyone is going to live forever, it's our decision on where we want to spend eternity. God doesn't decide for us. We choose! So anyway, it shouldn't amaze me that my little girl is asking questions about eternity, but yet it still does.
One morning Lucia walked into the kitchen, she announced that this was NOT the day that she was going to heaven. And then she went on to inform me that we would all go together on another day....but not today! At first I laughed, but then started to get a little worried. She was talking like heaven was so close and in the near future. Yikes! But honestly, why should that worry me? I'm a Christian. Shouldn't I be looking forward to spending eternity in heaven with my Savior, instead of dredding it? Ok, so I like my life down here. I don't want change. I don't want to leave my family behind. So with this kind of an attitude, how do I express to my daughter that heaven is a wonderful place and we all should be excited about going there?
I have decided that it all comes down to an issue of faith. Do I really believe what the Bible says about heaven? Do I even KNOW what heaven is going to be like? We can search the scriptures and get some knowledge. We can ask the Holy Spirit to teach us in this area as we read His Word. My final answer IS absolutely, positively YES. God's Word is TRUTH. I believe every word of it. Not that He had too, but God in His infinite grace, has proved over and over to me, that He is God and His Word is true. I no longer am holding on to the coat tails of my parent's faith, it is mine now. God is very real to me.
Because God IS real to me, the Holy Spirit gives me a greater awareness that there is an enemy out there that is telling us lies that heaven isn't so great, that we shouldn't look forward to going there. He wants us to focus on Earth, where we are now, what we are doing now, what we have now, what we could lose if we go to heaven now. Now, now, now. The Bible tells us to meditate on eternal things, not on NOW things.
Hard as it may be, I've got to change my thinking. Child-like faith or adult-like doubt? I can't see heaven, can't touch it, can't smell it, but I know it's there, because God's Word says it and I believe it.
All it took for me, was the faith of a child, my daughter, to bring eternity into fine focus for me. She seemed to be looking forward to heaven, when I wasn't. All the things of God are too great for us to understand. So He tells us to come as a child and believe what He tells us; and yet there are other times when God allows the Holy Spirit to open our hearts and minds to whisper a new revelation into our spirit. If you have ever had that happen to you....God speaking straight into you...then you know what I'm talking about. He gives you a confidence that you have never had before, He gives you the answer you've been looking for, He answers the questions you've been asking yourself all along, He speaks to you and it is unmistakeably Him. That is what I believe heaven will be like. When we get there, we'll learning something new about God, second by second for all eternity. Absolutely incomprehensible!
Oh, and one more thing....
Note to devil: this Earth is not my home, tell your lies to all your demons, I'm looking forward to eternity in heaven without YOU!