Wouldn’t it make sense that when we have fought the good fight and finished the race and kept the faith, that we cross a kind of finish line and celebrate like an athlete? For in that moment we will know—we will know beyond all speculation, beyond all doubting, beyond all need for faith, that every effort was worth it, that no moment of suffering was in vain, that no sorrow will go uncomforted, that no ache will go unsoothed, that no tear will be left undried.
Do you ever wonder what it’s like to enter heaven? Do you ever wonder what you will see first, what you will hear first, what you will feel and experience first? Do you ever wonder what your very first thought will be after you’ve fallen asleep in this world to awaken in the next? I’m sure you do. We all do. We all wonder what’s just beyond the great chasm that separates life from death, earth from heaven, here from there.
I have recently found myself pondering this great question. As I take my morning walk to read the Bible and pray, as I meditate upon God and his grace, my mind begins to wonder and my imagination to picture. Though I admit I can do little more than speculate where God has chosen to remain silent, I do find a theory forming in my mind.
I have a theory that we enter heaven with a cry of victory, that our first thought and first exclamation is one of joy, relief, vindication. We have lived our Christian lives by faith, not sight. We have cast in our lot with a God we cannot see or touch, we have lived by the rule of a book that contradicts every bit of human wisdom, we have made a long pilgrimage toward a City that is hidden from our view. We have comforted ourselves in trial by pondering joys to come, we have consoled ourselves in grief with assurances that we will see our loved ones again, we have eased our fears of death by believing in life beyond the grave.