20/20 Spiritual Vision

2 Corinthians 4-18 imageI have been thinking about heaven lately.  I think about what my grandparents must be experiencing right now and I wonder if I would recognize them or if it would take me a minute.  Recently, I came across a paradox in Scripture where Paul tells the church at Corinth to “focus on what is unseen.” I have astigmatism, so to focus on what I can see is often a challenge let alone what is unseen.  Paul is onto something, though.  Focusing on what I see usually leaves me feeling a tad depressed.  Take for instance the news.  Okay, enough said.  How about something a little more heartwarming like children or puppies.  I have some of both.  My children and their father are the loves of my life, and I can’t imagine my life without them in it.  But when I focus on them, like really focus on them, I feel this incredible responsibility and even the hardship of marriage and motherhood.  I watch my kids grow up before my very eyes and have romantic chats with hubby about retirement and the AARP.  And our dog thinks he is a person.  I just don’t know how anyone who goes outside to do his business could believe that.

But then I read Paul and get a reality check.  This is all so temporary.  The difficulties at work, home, in relationships, and in speaking what we believe to those who have yet to believe with afflictions and perplexity will have an earthly end.  Our preoccupation with ourselves will be through.  I have also been thinking about how we will not be self-conscious in heaven.  Our whole selves- our true selves- will be completely overtaken by the glory of God, and we won’t be thinking “What does she think of me?” “How do I look?” “I wish I didn’t say that in that way.” “Do I fit here?” There will be no regrets or anxieties in heaven.  We will be present with Christ- PRESENT.  Able to simply be.  To rest.  To worship Him without distraction, joining in the resounding praises of the angels and the redeemed. Anything this side of heaven, any suffering, persecution, or affliction is light and momentary compared to the “incomparable eternal weight of glory.”  To consider that the greatest pain of one of God’s precious saints (I am thinking specifically of the martyrs) is minuscule in light of the reward of heaven begs our attention.  When we focus on that- the unseen- we will see our life clearer, and eternity far greater.

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