My nephew Dallas was about four years old when his great-grandmother passed away after a lengthy illness.
Trying to explain this to her young son, my sister Colleen told Dallas that great-grandma was no longer here but went to heaven to be with Jesus. Her answer seemed to satisfy his young inquiring mind.
However, a few days later, we were all going to the family viewing ‘to see grandma one last time’ before the actual funeral service the following day. As we all walked quietly into the funeral home my young nephew looked all around and then looked up at his mom and with total confusion he blurted out, “THIS is heaven??”
We all had a good chuckle at how Dallas’ disappointment and confusion with the situation couldn’t be hidden. He seemed to understand that grandma went to heaven but then when he was told a few days later that we were “going to see grandma one last time” he assumed we must be going to heaven and was deeply disappointed that heaven didn’t seem nearly as beautiful as he thought it must be!
We all deal with disappointments in life and this year has likely had more than usual for many of us! There have been those with loved ones who passed away with no family by their side. Family in the hospital or long term care facility that were all alone with no visitors allowed. There have been weddings that have been cancelled and graduations that have either been cancelled all together or scaled down. Disappointments, grief, loneliness, and hopelessness are part of our world and even more so these last few months but I can assure you that heaven will not be disappointing!
In Revelation 21:4, 18-25 we read, “And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away. The wall was made of jasper, and the city of pure gold, as pure as glass. I did not see a temple in the city, because the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are its temple. The city does not need the sun or the moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gives it light, and the Lamb is its lamp …there will be no night there.”
These days it can seem that the world is out of control but I find it comforting to know that God is always near and nothing escapes Him. He has formed the earth and prepared heaven for His own. Romans 10:9 tells us how we can be assured of our eternal destination, “If you declare with your mouth, "Jesus is Lord," and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.”
Dallas didn’t end up going where he thought he was going because he didn’t understand but we can know most assuredly that we are headed for heaven and it will be anything but disappointing! I can’t wait, can you?