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Is this heaven or hell?

He was restless. Sleeping only lightly, unsettled.

So me, too. heaven or hell

But he awoke with a start, needing help to the bathroom. As he hobbled over, he asked the zinger, so typical of my daddy.

Is this heaven?
Or is this hell?

He’s known for asking questions. Tough ones. It’s one of his distinguishing marks in the Bible classes he taught for years. And he was never satisfied with pat answers. Dig deeper. Think, think. Think for yourself.

I’m trying to, Daddy. You’re still asking tough questions. I’m thinking.

I knew his mind was confused when he asked the latest. Nonetheless, I knew better than ignore my daddy. The question stood, and it begged an answer.

No time for theological deliberation. Spit something out.

Between the two choices? I chose heaven.

This is heaven, Daddy.

But if this is The Heaven we’d been bragging on all morning, it clearly left something to be desired.

Those who followed Jesus asked about this kingdom, too. Jesus answered, “The kingdom of God is in the midst of you” (Luke 17:20-21). He taught that believing in him gave them eternal life now (John 5:24).

I believe it. I knew Daddy believed, too, that we’ve already begun eternal life, life in the kingdom of heaven. Here. Now.

But now included obstacles. Later, none.

Daddy didn’t question my answer that this is heaven.
He didn’t ask, “Then why does it feel like hell?”

I couldn’t have answered. I know as believers that we’ve already passed from death to life, from heaven to hell.

But not in full. Fullness lies in hope. Ahead. Soon.

For now, in part can hurt. It can include disease. Pain. Confusion.

For now, it’s heaven on earth.
Later, it will be heaven in heaven.
Perfection with Jesus face to face.

So clear, that no one will have to ask.

* * *

Walk with Him Wednesday @ Holy Experience

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My walks with Him


Becky@ Daily On My Way To Heaven said...

Lisa, Thank you for leaving a comment in my box... and thank you for joining me in my daily journey, under the sun towards Heaven.

In Him,

gretchen said...


Renee said...

This is so beautiful...touched my soul and brought tears to my eyes.....

Unknown said...

exactly! thru the years i've grown quite weary of remarks such as "this is what Heaven must be like" which are usually made at a retreat, typically after a campfire devo or a period of spirited, heart-felt singing... and i'm like, no! this IS Heaven, right now! yeah, we're encumbered by the trappings of our mortal bodies but the spirit within us will live on, and these experiences are "timber" as the old spiritual says that our awaiting home is built from, and our finite bondage in time is exactly that, finite, it has an ending, but those experiences don't, the way they exist now is the way they will exist then, it's not what Heaven will be *like* but Heaven exactly as it is, we're only seeing a piece of timber (to keep the former language in mind) but that piece of timber exists, is real, and we'll see it again just like it exists now...

well, you know what i mean, i'm preaching to the choir (well, an alto in the choir), just wanted to say i appreciate the post

Anonymous said...

So dear Lisa and such a poignant reminder of life on this earth. Some day this life will pass, but what is done for Christ is what will last!


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