Tired of talking/reading about Heaven? Didn’t think so. Frankly, I could talk about Heaven all day every day. However, the month is sadly coming to a close, and thus we are nearly finished with the topic of Heaven (for now). So maybe you just read one article. Maybe two. Maybe all of them! Either way, when you finish an article, particularly one about Heaven, you may ask yourself questions such as: “What now? Where do we go from here? How does this legitimately affect me?” Let’s reflect on the month real quick and see what we’ve covered and use that material to answer these questions.
We shouldn’t be running away from Hell, but rather toward Heaven- “I believe it’s time we shift our motivation from running from Hell to running towards Christ.” (Travis Farr, in “Not Running from, but Running to”) This may have been your initial motivation for salvation, and I’m in no way slamming you if it is. However, we need to now change that motivation. God’s love is super-fantastically-amazingly-awesome, and if we turn toward that and pursue it with all of our strength, we will find that we are no longer running wildly away from Hell. This gives us a purpose of pursuing.
Heaven isn’t about us; it’s about God-
- Heaven is going to be a blast.
- Heaven is for worshipping and abiding with God.
- Heaven is not for vacationing.
– (Scott Paris, in “Modern Misconceptions about Heaven”)
We need to be living Heavenly-minded lives- I’m not sure if this article struck home or not; only you can know that. However, if there is one thing that I want to repeat and get it as stuck in your mind as possible it is this: “You can’t turn your thoughts toward the future if they’re stuck in the past.” This can have a variety of reasons for a variety of people, and while I don’t have time to elaborate too much on the phrase, I think that you know what it means for YOU personally.
Hell isn’t for partying. It’s for punishment- If you dilute the severity of Hell, you consequently dilute the awesomeness of Heaven. We have to view Hell as it is: a painful, sad, terrifying place full of torment. There will not be a party in Hell. Nothing happy will happen in Hell. There is no deliverance out of Hell. And worst of all, the inhabitants of Hell are separated eternally from our Lord and Savior. There it is. Hell isn’t to be messed around with.
Being involved in furthering God’s kingdom brings the most lasting joy- No one will argue that temporal pleasure gives joy. However, as the name implies, it is not a lasting joy. It is temporal. God’s Kingdom doesn’t start after we die. It starts now.
Okay, so back where we started in this article. Where does this leave us? Honestly, I don’t know. For me, it leaves me entirely awestruck. I’m just utterly amazed that I have a God who loves me so much that He not only rescued me from the torment in Hell but also is preparing an amazing, perfect place for me. Doesn’t that make you excited? In awe? Ready to thank God? I realize that I’m not masterfully tying all of these components together in a conclusive way. However, I think that this topic does the talking for itself (at least it seems that way to me). Okay, let’s see about this… Wrapping up the entire month’s topic in one statement:
Seek first the Kingdom of God; that which is above, and press toward the goal of the high calling of Christ, not looking back, but keeping our eyes fixed fully on Christ.
That may or may not have been a run-on sentence, but you get the picture. So there it is. Don’t pass up this chance to change the way you view… everything. Be in continuous remembrance of Heaven. When you close out of this tab or turn off your phone, there is about a 99% chance that you won’t think back on this article again. Don’t let that happen. FOCUS ON HEAVEN!!! It’s all in your mind. Your actions follow your mind; ergo if we work on the battlefield of the mind, we will fare better on the battlefield of the actions. Here’s something practical to do: set up reminders, sticky notes, phone alarms, anything that can get you to remember Heaven. Try it for the rest of today. Then go to a full day. Then two days. You get the picture. Pray that God will help you in this ongoing struggle. Remember, the kingdom of God starts now, not after we die. Heaven is about God, not us, not fear of Hell, not the pleasures of Heaven. May God be with as you strive to do this in your daily life.