Monday, March 24, 2014

how a pastor's wife talked about heaven with her children

On an ordinary afternoon last week, I was driving my kiddos home from Target and one of them asked a question about heaven.

"Mom, do you think we will get bored in heaven, if we're just singing and praising God forever?"

I began to explain that our home beyond this world would be more than that. Eternity will be different than our world here, and we will be different too. It's hard to imagine what this means, but there will be no sorrow, no sadness, and no lull in the thrill of joy and glory.

"We won't get bored," I told them. "And when I get to heaven, I'm going to dance."

As the word "dance" floated from my lips, my heart spontaneously broke open, releasing a floodgate of longing. I found tears rolling down my cheeks and my breath was pressed out of my chest.

This all surprised me at first, but then in an instant it made perfect sense. All my faith and hope is bound up in this singular dream.

Yes, I will dance in heaven. I will dance on the grave of death and stomp out the last flame of pain's memory. I will leap for joy and spin in glorious praise of my eternal, victorious Savior.

I will dance because all the sad things will be proven false, all the burdens of sin will dissolve into a hazy dream of the past, and every cell of my being will know the true Love that has sewn us all together for eternity.

I will be transformed into my truest self, because when I see Him I will be just like Him. I will be the dancing queen, a daughter of the King in heavenly places. I will dance the steps I was created to dance. It's my destiny, my purpose, and all these tedious earthly miles are leading me to the day I live at last in His presence.

He has saved all the tears I have cried, and I will pour them out to wash His feet. I have wept for children who should have lived, for lovers who should have been true, for time that healed no real wounds but graciously carried us closer and closer to the Healer of all our broken days.

He will wash away the days of horror this crooked world offered us with the oil of grace that runs from His hands and feet. We will know beauty and love and truth the way we were meant to know them.

At long last, our light will shine unhindered for a thousand, million days and more. Eternity will be everything we have ever longed for, and not one moment will be boring.

In the meantime, He hums the tune of new mercies, and we learn the steps of His dance of love. This is where we practice, where humility and diligence strengthen us, and it is in the darkness that our faith lights the way for others to hear God's faithful song calling them home.

He is worthy of our praise and waiting to see us leap for joy despite our weary bones and uncomfortable earthly shoes. Don't miss your chance, don't cling to the wall and watch others dance without you.

You, too, were made for this dance, sweet son of mine. So dance on, dear children, and watch what God will do.

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