Last week, as I talked to my boyfriend, we found ourselves talking about God and Heaven. And he said that should he go to Heaven, he’d want God to allow him to explore space. I thought it was possible, but I’m sure my voice sounded hesitant, improbable even.
Since the death of my grandparents, I think of Heaven as the people who are there. I want to see them again. I know I will be reunited with them because we had a common faith in Jesus. I want to see Jessica. I want to talk to Ruth and Esther. And Mary and Paul. And I want to see Jesus and talk to Him. And hear Him laugh. I want the place where every tear is wiped away from every eye and there is pure joy. But the truth is, in my adult life, I have stopped thinking of Heaven as a place. We talk about the church, on earth, as “the people– the body of Christ” not “just a building.” I have adopted this as my view of Heaven.
But maybe there’s something to the fact that it’s a place.
As I finish Beautiful Outlaw, Eldredge quotes Matthew 19:28-29, the words of Jesus:
“In the re-creation of the world, when the Son of Man will rule gloriously, you who have followed me will also rule…”
Eldredge puts it this way, “The religious fog would have us believe that when we die we go to church forever, there to sing hymns for millennia. A horrible distortion, and not the future as Jesus understood it. He called the next chapter ‘the re-creation of the world’… A renewed heavens, a renewed earth. My friends, I hope you understand that we get the entire glorious kingdom back. Sunlight on water; songbirds in a forest; desert sands under moonlight; vineyards just before harvest– Jesus fully intends to restore the glorious world he gave us. Paradise lost; paradise regained.”
And just like that, it hit me. I want to hike through forests and up mountains in Heaven. With Jesus.
And in the re-creation of the heavens and earth– why can’t my boyfriend explore space?
I serve a big God. Maybe it’s time I start asking Him for the desires of my heart and stop putting Him in a box. Maybe it’s time to think differently about Jesus– the way Jesus actually is, not how I think He is.