I am getting antsy. Are you getting antsy? I am getting more and more obsessed with seeing that place in Heaven that is being prepared for me. You know, don’t you, that there is going to be a generation that never experiences death? I believe we are it. As I have said before, I may keel over tomorrow at the ripe old age of 49, and never even finish writing this article. But then, I could be whisked off this planet in the most glorious moment in history—the Rapture of the church, at any point, as far as that goes. Either way, I win.
So let’s discuss this a little bit. Death is such an ugly word to so many. And there are so many kinds of death—untimely deaths, unfortunate deaths, accidental deaths, peaceful deaths, grueling, terminal deaths, and then just plain old death. Each of us has pondered the idea of our death. When will it be? How will it come? How old will I be? Will it be painful? Will it be quick? Will I have a widow-maker like Terry James did and come back for a spell?
I must admit, I have not been afraid of death for as long as I can remember. The thought of leaving a grieving family is what pains me most. As my parent’s grow older, I long to be here to help take care of them, and I wonder who would do it if I should be taken first. Would it present a terrible hardship to my family if I were to die young? My parents have already lost one child. How could they bear this? Those are the thoughts that come to mind when I think of my own demise.
Some people say they “hate” this world. I get that. Especially with the heartbreak, illness and pain that many people must suffer. Do I hate this world? I probably wouldn’t go that far. I hate what Satan has done to this world, but the world itself, as far as the beauty of a warm spring day, a garden full of vegetables and flowers, a horse running across a pasture, an old faded barn, a massive weeping willow tree by a pond, hay bales in a field, my collies, family get-togethers—I derive pure joy from these things. I can only imagine the joy that will embrace us when all this is magnified a million times in Heaven. But for now, I will continue to enjoy the little worldly treasures that God has given us. I have a feeling that God will grant us every one of these things in Heaven—the non-materialistic pleasures of this world that we enjoy most. I am counting on that.
I just don’t think we will be experiencing those earthly treasures much longer—I really do not. Satan is eradicating them more and more every day, and more furiously than ever. The light is dimming and our surroundings are growing more, hazy, like smog rolling across a cityscape. He is plucking the enjoyment out of even the simple things. And as he does this, God is preparing us to come to our final home with Him for eternity. Our focus is shifted away from this earth and Heaven, and being with Jesus is all we long for.
Last night as we were watching yet another gospel DVD, the Booth Brothers masterfully executed the words and music to the song, “Look for Me at Jesus’ Feet.” (It overwhelmed me and I wept a bit.)
“Don’t look ‘neath the gates of pearl.
Don’t look on the streets of gold.
Don’t look by the walls of jasper, nor among the many sites untold.
For I’ve been longing and I’ve been waiting, for the precious Holy One to see.
There I’ll be through the countless ages…look for me at Jesus’ feet.”
I know that my Lord is preparing my place. Do I love my little “pieces of Heaven” on this earth? I put them in perspective and know what magnificence is coming. A sunny day out for a walk right now is a conduit to eternity–a small jewel to grasp and savor as this waning world comes to a close and the glorious millennial kingdom is approaching. I thank God that we still have the gifts of His creation while we are waiting for Him. It would be unbearable if we mentally deleted His marvels that He gave us and stopped living. Our time here is almost up. With His strength and guidance, and holding to His promise, we can make it!
God has given us the tools in His Word to assure us of our salvation. He will give us the endurance and the purpose to finish this race. God has not called us yet for a reason…we still have the lost to unchain and bring with us.
The Architect of creation has promised to prepare a place for us. He gives us this glimpse in the Bible when Jesus says: “In My Father’s house, there are many mansions. If it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you and if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you unto myself, so that where I am, there ye may also be” (John 14: 2-3).
Let’s break it down…
1. Jesus Christ prepared a place for all believers on the day of His death.
2. God drew up the blueprint.
3. Jesus was the carpenter who masterfully framed the structure of our eternity when he died on the cross.
4. The nails and hammer used to CRUCIFY HIM are the only tools required to build our Heavenly dwellings.
5. The interiors are stained with Jesus’ BLOOD to remind us that HE FINISHED the job on Calvary.
6. Jesus’ DEATH AND RESURRECTION paid our final mortgage. Our sin debt is gone and we are forever free to live with Him in a homestead prepared lovingly by Him, for us.
Knowing this, why would anyone want to risk not accepting the redeeming grace that our Lord has provided for us? Our time here is coming to a close. The Lord could call us in death or the Rapture at any moment. Why not choose spending eternity in the place that He has prepared? The peace that comes with knowing Jesus is vast and unending, and it is absolutely free to anyone who chooses Him. All one has to do is repent of their sins and believe in Him to begin the journey as a follower of Christ. The Holy Spirit will step in and guide you until the pilgrimage on this earth is over.
So for me, it is very simple. Wherever Jesus is, that is my permanent residence. That will be my destination. Sit me underneath that willow tree, on the green grass of a meadow, at Jesus’ feet. Where else would I want to spend my countless ages? Nowhere else.