Why the Things of This Earth Are Never Quite Enough
When one of my granddaughters was little, she liked the word “more.” From her favorite food to the Bible stories that I told her, she always wanted “more.”
Deep down inside, we all are like that. One of our favorite words is “more.” We always want more out of life. We want the newest, the latest, the freshest and the coolest. I think God has wired us that way, because the Bible says that He has placed eternity in our hearts (see Ecclesiastes 3:11).
Here is the problem: As much as we live life, as much as we experience, as much as we see, it always seems that it isn’t quite enough. We have an innate recognition that this world will not be able to deliver on its promises.
A Longing for More
When you put your faith in Jesus Christ, you become a citizen of Heaven. That is your home. The apostle Paul wrote, “But we are citizens of heaven, where the Lord Jesus Christ lives. And we are eagerly waiting for him to return as our Savior” (Philippians 3:20 NLT).
That is why we have a longing for something this earth never can deliver. Only Heaven can. It is also why, as Christians, we always will be a bit out of tune with this world and all that it celebrates. Certain things the world parades before us will leave us cold, because as followers of Jesus, we want something more—much more.
C.S. Lewis put it this way: “There have been times when I think we do not desire heaven but more often I find myself wondering whether, in our heart of hearts, we have ever desired anything else.” Lewis described this desire as the “inconsolable longing.”
We could think of it as a homing instinct. Animals have an ability to travel great distances in their migrations, because God has placed a built-in GPS in them, so to speak. And every now and then we see stories in the news about cats who went missing, only to return home years later.
One of these days, those of us who have put our faith in Jesus Christ will go home too. Heaven is more real to me now than ever, because I have an investment there. My son, Christopher, is there. My mother is there, as well as my father who adopted me. Some of my friends are there, as well as people from our church.
I have become even more interested in Heaven than I ever have been.
But I think we all need to know more about Heaven. After all, when you’re planning to take a trip somewhere, it’s a good idea to do a little research first. In fact, the Bible tells us to think about Heaven.
The Realities of Heaven
Writing to the believers in Colossae, the apostle Paul said, “Since you have been raised to new life with Christ, set your sights on the realities of heaven, where Christ sits in the place of honor at God’s right hand. Think about the things of heaven, not the things of earth” (Colossians 3:1–2 NLT).
Paul was saying that every Christian should be engaged in a diligent, single-minded investigation of Heaven. In the original language, Paul used the present tense, which we could translate, “Keep seeking Heaven.”
Maybe you’ve heard the expression, “They’re so heavenly minded, they’re no earthly good.” The fact is, however, that many people are so earthly minded, they’re no heavenly good.
I want to be heavenly minded in the proper sense, and I think we all should desire that as Christians.
We tend to think of Heaven as surreal and earth as real. In other words, our point of reference is earth. Yet, Heaven is real, and earth is temporary. That is why C.S. Lewis described life on earth as the shadowlands. Earth is a pale version of Heaven, not the other way around.
When God commanded Moses to build the tabernacle in the wilderness, He warned, “‘Be sure that you make everything according to the pattern I have shown you here on the mountain'” (Hebrews 8:5 NLT). That is because it was a copy, a shadow, of the original that is in Heaven.
When we see a beautiful sunset or something in nature that takes our breath away, it is merely a glimpse of the real thing that is waiting for us in Heaven.
The writer of Hebrews tells us, “Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up. And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us” (12:1 NLT).
This statement follows Hebrews 11, which is a record of great men and women of faith who died serving God. We sometimes refer to it as the Hall of Faith. It’s here that we read about Abraham, Joseph, Moses, Rahab, Gideon, Samson, David, and other heroes of the faith.
One way to look at it is they gave us an example to follow. Another way to interpret it is they not only were models of how to live, but they also are observing us and perhaps even cheering us on. Are they the “huge crowd of witnesses” the writer is talking about? I don’t know. But I know this much. We are in the race of our lives on earth. And I know for certain that Jesus is watching.
In his final epistle, Paul said, “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, and I have remained faithful. And now the prize awaits me – the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give me on the day of his return. And the prize is not just for me but for all who eagerly look forward to his appearing” (2 Timothy 4:7–8 NLT).
We all have a race to run and a race to finish, but we don’t know how long the race will be. So, let’s run well.
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Originally published at WND.com
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