Over Christmas break, I realized again a feeling I have experienced before—that time with friends and family is never quite enough. My parents visited for a few days leading up to Christmas, and with holiday events and getting kids to bed late, our nightly time to visit one-on-one was not nearly as long as I’d hoped for. We had friends in town from other areas—some we got to see but never for enough time, and others, due to busy schedules, we weren’t able to see at all. We visited our old church for a Christmas Eve service, and while we connected with some of our dearly beloved and missed church family, I still left with a tinge of sadness in my heart that I wasn’t able to talk with more people or have longer and deeper conversations with those with whom we did engage. We tried to be mindful of setting aside time to just be together as our family of seven. Yet, despite planning a fair amount of family time, it just didn’t seem like enough.
In short, our break was wonderful, relaxing, and full, but I was found wanting—wanting more time to be with, grow in relationship with, and enjoy the company of the people I love. It is in this wanting that I am reminded how desperately I long for heaven and how sweet God’s promise is that the limited time for relationships I currently experience here on Earth will there become unlimited, eternal, and never-ending! Better yet, He promises that even relationships that are broken here will be restored and made right. Even better still, God himself will be there with us, living in the beauty of our restored and right relationship with Him. “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away…’Behold, I am making all things new’” (Revelation 21:3-5).
This verse about heaven astounds me and fills me with glee! Isn’t it amazing that God has prepared an eternal home for those who love Him where we will have limitless time to connect with Him and with each other, free from brokenness, ulterior motives, ill-intentions, hurt, jealousy, misunderstandings, tears, death, or goodbyes? I could spend weeks hiking in the mountains with a group of dear friends, going deep into conversation about their lives and all God has done through them and still have no less time and no less days to spend with other friends or family. I could meet someone new, perhaps someone I wouldn’t have connected well with on earth, and could spend hours hearing their story and learning from their experiences. And when I need to say goodbye to someone or close out a conversation, I will know it isn’t goodbye forever because we have endless time to meet and talk again in the future. It’s amazing and wonderful, and mind blowing to try to comprehend!
Even more amazing and mind blowing is that in heaven I will have the opportunity to not only stand face to face with my Savior but to grow in my relationship and friendship with Him. There will be endless moments for me to have real, personal, face-to-face, one-on-one time with God! This hit me afresh while singing these lyrics at Camp Perkins over the break, “Won’t you dance with me throughout the heavens and beyond the seas and up on the mountaintops, flow with the breeze, come carry me, Lord won’t you dance with me?” Though I must admit this song seemed corny to me in the past, it moved me to joyful tears as I closed my eyes and pictured myself talking and walking alone with Jesus through the sky, along sandy sunset beaches, on the tops of majestic mountains, and even, perhaps, amidst the curious beauty He created below the sea. How completely perfect and awesome that will be!
I pray that if this article has found you, like me, desiring more—more deep relationships, overflowing joy, limitless time, and unending peace—that you may find hope in God’s promise of heaven—His place of endless days of joy and of no more wanting!
"No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined what God has prepared for those who love him” (1 Corinthians 2:9).