Summer means freedom to roam, travel, and spend quality time with family and friends. My mother always had the parlour ready to welcome guests. We children were not allowed to sit in that room, ever! Mama would get out her fancy china cups and make crustless sandwiches (no crusts on because that was the proper thing to serve!). She would always have a variety of dainty squares and, of course, pie — lemon was my favourite! Then she would take off her kitchen apron and she'd put on her Sunday dress. Once she appeared all dressed up, we knew that everything was ready, and she could enjoy her guests for the afternoon or evening, or both, if they chose to stay. We knew that there would be stories — some real, and some probably more true than we knew — always punctuated with laughter and nodding of heads before another story was shared. The atmosphere was exciting and contagious for all of us, but for the kids, it was because we would be allowed to enter the parlour for whatever time the guests remained.
Summer: a time when there is always the chance that people will drop by and share a "cuppa" and whatever treats we have ready. The conversation is filled with laughter, and yesterday's problems are, for the time being, forgotten. Some visits are more formal and others more casual, but all of them warm, welcomed, and memorable. My husband always wants a couple of loaves in the freezer just in case someone comes. (Mama would be proud of him, were she still alive!)
Can we even imagine the possibility of having a "party" all the time? Can we even try to imagine that summertime freedom to share, laugh, and celebrate every day? Well, God has promised us just that! One day, all of us who trust in Jesus will be allowed to sit in the parlour, and we will be the guests who are awaited, prepared for, and welcomed! Jesus promised us:
John 14:2 – In My Father's house are many mansions … I go to prepare a place for you. (NKJV)
One day, we will be escorted into the mansions of heaven by Jesus Himself, as honoured guests of the Father. "And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also." (John 14:3 NKJV)
We will know the laughter, joy, and blessings of never having another health issue, never shedding another tear, and never having to leave! What a precious promise of hope and assurance the Bible gives us — on God's own authority.
Mama has been gone to her heavenly home for almost twenty-nine years, and although we miss her, we know that she is enjoying her parlour, and her kitchen apron has been replaced with her Sunday dress. She is an honoured guest in God's mansion, and she can relax and enjoy the laughter and stories. She has no more health issues, and she can walk, even run. "They shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint." (Isaiah 40:31b NKJV)
On this journey of life, we may find that some days are harder than others, and some days, our bodies and minds are just too weary for words. "But God" (isn't that a wonderful expression!) is preparing His mansions for our arrival! He is walking along with us, wiping our tears and holding our hand! Trust Him to know what is best for us — here and hereafter!
Isaiah 40:31a – But those who wait on the Lord shall renew their strength. (NKJV)
Prayer: Dear Lord, we thank You for Your Word that assures us who trust in You of our home with You one day. Thank You for walking this journey of faith and life with us, holding us up and strengthening our footsteps as we walk closer to You! Amen.