For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us.
Being Heavenly Minded
C.S. Lewis once said, “Aim at heaven and you will get earth thrown in. Aim at earth and you get neither.” I think he was onto something there. If we live today with the end in mind, it will shape our thinking, and our lives will be different. We would look at trouble differently, we would look at the present evil world in a different way, and we might be able to endure our trials and tribulations much easier (Rom. 8:28). If we live with the end in mind, knowing that our end is the secure hope of a home in the kingdom of heaven, maybe that would affect how we live today. What if you think of this life as being on board an airliner. You already have your boarding pass and are seated, and now nothing can prevent you from reaching your final destination. Even when you hit severe turbulence, you know that you’ll still be arriving safely sometime in the future. Wouldn’t that make the trip a lot more enjoyable and the problems more tolerable? Shouldn’t the knowledge of our eternal destination help us in the way we live our lives today? I think the phrase that they’re so heavenly minded that they’re no earthly good is not true because, really, if they are earthly good, it’s because they’re so heavenly minded.
Perhaps God didn’t tell us that much about heaven in the Bible because then we’d all be in a hurry to get there. Jesus told us that if we’re persecuted for our faith today, we have great rewards awaiting us in heaven (Matt. 5:11-12), so that should motivate us to share our faith consistently. We don’t seek out persecution, no, but the reality is that anyone who lives a godly life will suffer persecution (2 Tim. 3:12). And if they persecuted Jesus, why should we expect anything less (John 15:20)? If we knew that our persecutions would increase our rewards in heaven, would that make us more deliberate in telling people about Christ? For the soul-winner, they are going to shine as bright as the stars forever (Dan. 12:3). When Jesus returns for His church, He will be bringing His rewards with Him (Rev. 22:12), which is what kept Paul pressing on in his life (Phil. 3:14). When Jesus said “well done thou good and faithful servant, because you have been faithful in a very little thing, you are to be in authority over ten cities” (Luke 19:19), did He mean that some will be in charge over entire cities in the kingdom? It would seem so, but I really don’t know for sure.
Earthly Training for Heaven Tomorrow
Think of today like this: Today we serve in training for actual serving in heaven. Today we learn how to fellowship in training with one another so we’ll know how to really fellowship in heaven. Today we learn how to worship God in training so we’ll really know how to worship God in heaven. The church is called the Body of Christ because it does the work of Christ on earth, and we are to be His hands, His feet, His voice, and His eyes. The essential parts of the body that make up the church must be working in harmony and productively for the work that Christ has assigned for us. If you really understood that we are in training today for a future eternal home tomorrow, it might give you more motivation to live in a way to achieve more for Him today, and it would affect your life every day.
A Closing Prayer
Righteous heavenly Father, I thank You for giving us glimpses of heaven and what awaits us some great day (Rev. 21, 22), and that day will be unimaginable. So please help me focus on remembering that my true home is awaiting me and how I can live differently because of this knowledge today, and in Jesus’ name I pray.
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