Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Adam and Jeremy Say: Heaven from the mouths of the Novice

The following conversation between Adam and Jeremy took place via email over the course of several days. It deals with the topic of Heaven from their own unique perspectives.

Adam: Dude my pastor preached this great sermon about Heaven yesterday that has totally lifted my spirits! Afterwards my wife and I were talking about Heaven, and about how neither she nor I seem to spend much time talking about or thinking about Heaven. Do you spend much time focused on Heaven?

Jeremy: I guess I think about heaven a lot, but only because I ponder about the spiritual realm and God(and if those things had a location, they would be in heaven right?)
As far as what heaven is going to be like when we get there, you're right, I don’t think about it much. I think I used to think about heaven more when I was a kid.
Of course heaven is then main attraction to the Christian faith right? I mean who wants to go to hell when they die and live in anguish and gnashing of teeth?
I don’t want to be a Christian just because I get to go to heaven, so I think I purposefully try not to really think about it. Right now I want to focus on the "fullness of life" and doing the work of the kingdom on earth; that’s why I’m even here to begin with, right?
I’m not saying its wrong to think about heaven, but I think people miss the boat when they think of Christianity as a "ticket to heaven" instead of what it really is.

As for what I actually think about heaven, there are too many thoughts to put down. 99% of them are all good of course, and the 1% that is negative is the possibility of being bored. I mean forever is a long time, but that’s just stupid so I get over that quickly.
I think about having any physical desire I have ever wanted just given to me. I think about worshiping Jehovah face to face and spending time with Jesus in person. I think about seeing friends and people that have died. I think about hanging out with Paul and Peter and getting to know them. I wonder if me and Jax will have marital obligations in heaven and if we will still have the same romantic love for each other. I think about travel, and how space and time will probably be completely different. I think about the "new earth" and if that will be the same as this earth minus sin, and I think about how I will not have the desire to sin and please myself. I’m curious if that is actually possible.
There’s more stuff, but I think you get the gist.

Adam: I think the main draw to the Christian RELIGION may be Heaven, but I think the main draw the Christian faith is a relationship with the creator of the universe... that said Heaven totally blows my mind... like when John tried to write about what he saw in Revelation you can tell that it was so totally unreal that he could not put it into actual words and so he had to approximate groups of words to try and get people to understand what he saw. Personally I hope that heaven is like a magical garden or something... I guess my adoration for nature drives me to thinking that Heaven will be a place that is filled with all of the beautiful things I see in God's creation now... like the sun will always be setting and rising but never up or down and there will always be light fluffy clouds in the sky that capture those amazing setting and rising rays from the sun and turn them into marvelous pinks, reds, purples and oranges. I fully expect to see green foliage and vibrant flowers everywhere I go, but one of the things I have begun to think about is that everyone will be walking around naked... when God created man he created him beautifully and it was only our sin nature that made our nakedness sinful, so I am guess that in heaven the beauty of the body will once again be displayed and admired for its singular beauty among all of God's creation.

Another funny thing is that my wife asked me just last night if I thought she and I would be married still in heaven and I remembered that passage in the Bible where some religious person tries to trap Jesus by asking Him who a woman would be married to in heaven if she had been married to three brothers in succession... like one brother dies so the next one marries her to take care of her... etc. and I remember Jesus saying that there was not marriage in Heaven... which makes sense to me, because we will be the bride of Christ in Heaven, but I don't think it made the wife happy... I think the thing that excites me most about heaven is the idea that there will be an answer to all the unanswered questions in life. I seriously hope there is like a DVD they hand you as you get there that gives you the history of earth from the perspective of the all knowing... is that silly?

Jeremy: Nah, there are many life questions that we face that I think "I should remember to ask God that when I get to heaven". Yeah, I definitely wish we could watch something that replays ancient occurrences and stuff. I think the thing that excited me most is hanging with people and never having to worry about not having enough time with that person. I can take my time and not have to cram everyone as a "single serving friend". Like when I’m chatting with Paul, I’m sure there will be millions of people that want to talk to him, so I don’t have to worry about being rude to him or them by taking all his time. They will get their chance. I don’t believe there will be marriage in heaven, which makes me wonder if there will be romance and Eros. I think I would be disappointed if there was not such a thing.
Oh, I’m also excited about not losing to Lucifer anymore; I can really kick him in the face with my steal toed boots.

Adam: I think the absence of sin will be the greatest aspect of heaven, after the presence of God.

Jeremy: heck yes. Can you imagine what it will be like to not have the desire to please yourself? Or do you think we will still have that desire?

Adam: I can not even imagine a world where my selfishness is gone... and therefore that must be the way heaven will be.

Jeremy: Agreed. We can not even imagine the things of heaven.

Adam: Now I kind of feel like this whole conversation was futile.

Jeremy: Well, we can imagine, but how small a portion of what we imagine will actually be there, and how much stuff will be there that we are incapable of imagining.

Adam: It is almost so big and so mind blowing that it is scary.

Jeremy: I'll try not to imagine it that much. I don’t want heaven to be scary.

Adam: It is like a big tree... it is so big and tall that it is terrifying to climb it but once you get to the top it is the greatest place on earth.

Jeremy: I was thinking the ocean. So big, and even though you can only see a couple feet in front of you, it goes much farther...which also would make it scary.

Adam: Well aren't we full of metaphors today... I must say that we may be the world’s most unlikely philosophers, but the mere thought of heaven seems to have captured our imaginations.

Jeremy: maybe because the possibilities are endless, and it will be everything we ever wanted.

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