Yesterday I blogged a bit about not living completely in the Christian-ecosystem that sometimes is known as the “Bubble”.
I would like to explore what people are saying about Heaven as well as pain (even if the pain isn’t even spoken about).
What are people saying about life after death?
As a Christian living in this world I recognize that to me this life is a gift…but that doesn’t always mean there isn’t pain and difficulties along the way. Life is not just about the destination but also about the journey.
QUESTIONS ABOUT SUFFERING
Sometimes the journey is painful.
Why do some people endure more pain than others?
Why is there suffering in this world?
I understand that suffering and pain is a part of our fallen world but to me that answer sometimes just isn’t good enough…I want more. I yearn to get to the bottom of this whole pain thing. Isn’t that why some doctors feel called to their practice in the first place? They want to help ease the pain in this life? Isn’t there relief in sight? Sometimes I look around me and am staggered by friends who have lost parents and other loved ones through the blight of cancer and other terminal diseases.
It hurts my heart to see servants of God, who deeply love God and serve Him and yet they are afflicted with these cancers that eat away and ravage the body. I often ask “Why God?”
When I think of the verse that Jesus said (even within the context of loving your enemies) – “He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.” I recognize that God is fair and just in this world. I also recognize that the fallen nature of this world is the ultimate cancer that ravages our world. The rains can, and some times do, include times of emotional and physical drought for the sinner and the saint. The rains can include times of healing and times of sickness…and even death.
Although I know this to be true, can I be honest with you? It doesn’t do much to ease my hurt when I see friends hurting. I hurt right along with them as they suffer…but as a Christian I do know that there is ultimate healing and that death is not the end.
What other people are saying…
Last night I asked friends of mine a question. The question was -” who else do you long to see in heaven besides Jesus?“
Their answers ranged from grand parents, spouses, relatives and friends and even children that some had lost.
Even though we have this hope and assurance of Eternity with Christ we still endure hardships and sufferings. Life is not easy and we still carry these wounds of those loved ones we have lost along with us. Sometimes their memories comfort us while other times they help us to endure through rough patches we ourselves are going through.
BUT HEAVEN IS FOR REAL…RIGHT NOW!:
Here’s a revelation, perhaps you already know this – We don’t have to wait for heaven to get here to experience God’s Kingdom now!
Luke 17:20b-21 (NIV) Jesus said, “The coming of the kingdom of God is not something that can be observed, nor will people say, ‘Here it is,’ or ‘There it is,’ because the kingdom of God is in your midst [or,within you].”
Jesus experienced suffering in His very human life. He was hurt by betrayal, but abandonment and He even suffered the worst of deaths. I think it is safe to say that Jesus knows a little bit about human suffering and what we go through still today. Despite the fact that suffering exists here’s a source of hope for you and for me: The Kingdom of God is here and now! Jesus may have been implying the He was the Kingdom in physical form and though He isn’t physically here His Presence in the form the Holy Spirit is. We are not alone in this world…we never were. God’s Kingdom is among us still. Eternity is around us…we just haven’t recognized it yet.
It is true that when we die we will see Eternity in all of its glory, but we do not need to wait for that day to experience God’s presence every day! His presence is the essence of eternity and despite the sufferings of these human forms and the fallen world we live in, He can provide us the victory through it all! This may be difficult to swallow for some of us…I still struggle with it myself, but I do believe despite pain and suffering God is very present with us right here and right now!
Heaven is for real, so is pain and suffering, BUT the Almighty is also very, very real as well!
-Just a thought.