How do you think you’ll respond when you realize you’ve made it to heaven? My answer surprised me.
Not long ago, on a small hillside east of St. Louis, MO, I was cutting grass.
Naturally, my mind was a million miles away from that small hillside…
Somewhere between a lump of books in a library and a white-sand beach watching the sun set with my sweetie by my side.
Eventually my mind wandered to more weightier matters, though, like heaven…
More specifically, how I would respond when I got there.
My Likely Reaction to Heaven
I think I know how I would WANT to react: Happy, but eager to hunt down anyone who could tell me, from the beginning, the history of mankind.
But then it struck me: That’s not how I would respond at all.
Something more profound would occur in that tiny moment: When I blink my eyes after death and the reality of where I am settles in, I would probably curl into a ball and weep.
All I can think of is, “I’m home. I made it. It’s real.”
In 1 Corinthians 15 Paul announces the devastating loss it would be if he spent his life always on the edge of death, starvation and abuse if in fact the dead were not raised to life. If in fact Christ was not raised from the dead.
Pointless. That’s what it would amount to. His vigorous defense and proclamation of the Gospel of Jesus Christ would have been an exercise in futility.
Why not just eat and drink and die?
Truth is, Paul said, “Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain,” because he knew we would wrestle with doubt.
He knew we would struggle. And more.
Speculating on Paul’s Trip to Heaven
But in the end, though, Paul wrote “For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain,” a letter he wrote towards the end of his life. A letter he wrote while in prison. A letter who’s dominant tone is joy, a joy grounded in the humiliation and exaltation of Jesus Christ.
I can only speculate that Paul, after death and in heaven, blinked, and when the weight of where he was sunk in, he sighed and wept on his hands and knees.
What about you, saint: How do you think you’ll respond when you realize you’ve made it to heaven? Share your thoughts.