Genesis 1:8 – And God called the firmament heaven. (KJV)
2 Peter 3:5a – By the word of God heavens existed long ago. (NRSV)
By an unexpected incident, I ended up visiting in a well-kept and stylish retirement home. Standing at the nicely-carved front entrance, I waited to be let in. The plush carpets, leather chairs, sofas, and mahogany furniture were many grades up from my ordinary, simple home. Somehow, my steps slid onward through the hallways as strangers unaccustomed to such surroundings!
I found myself thinking that it would take me some time to get accustomed to such a lifestyle, and more than that, I would not have the vocabulary to match the atmosphere. The dining room displayed attractive Valentine decorations and tables covered with white linens and red, heart-shaped ornaments. An entertainer was playing and singing for a group of residents comfortably seated around her. I knew I would not have the financial means for such occupancy.
Then I saw the canes, walkers, and wheelchairs. I gave a sigh. Dear Lord! Can this be? The reality was shocking. My eyes welled up with tears.
Our journey to the end may be provided with comfort and compassionate care; thanks be to God. But wherever our eyes are when they close this life, a believer in Jesus Christ will find the heavenly mansion to be a real place. And where Jesus is, there is glory and joy. Though we do not see it now, the garden of God, His heaven, our heavenly home, exists and is being made ready for us. Christ is the light in heaven's banquet hall. With that light, our eyes will survey the realm of life everlasting.
The price was paid on the Calvary's cross — Jesus provided a means, a way, to His banquet for all who say "Yes!" to Him. I come just as I am, a sinner saved by grace. His love's victory is my covering.
Far, far grander than the entrance to the most stylish retirement home, heaven's portals are gates of beauty. The chanting of the angels welcomes each arrival with great joy. All believers shall meet at that blessed place of solace and grace. Our vocabulary will flow in saintly praise and glory to God. Our feet will stand in honour to God, as we sing, "Holy, holy, holy is the Lord our God!"
Prayer: God of glory and steadfast love! Thank You for revealing to us the heaven above as You have created it. Things on earth can be good, but they have limits. Far better are things above with Your everlasting and limitless presence in communion with all the saints. Jesus, thank You for paying in full our entry to Your mansion! Amen.
It shall be well with my soul: it shall be well, it shall be well with my soul.