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Esther Heaven On Earth

Thought For The Week – Heaven On Earth

Esther shares her thought from the week; heaven on earth.

I love a holiday! Who doesn’t, right? During the lockdown, like everyone else, I was restricted to “stay-cation” holidays. Look, I’m not complaining. Lots of people had it much worse. However, to me, a real holiday is hopping on a plane and flying off to a familiar tropical paradise. Somewhere sunny, with soft sandy beaches and swaying palm trees. My own little “heaven on Earth”. Now, I’m sure that phrase will produce a different mental image for different people but, for me, having been born and bred there, the island of Barbados will always be my first choice.

For those of you who have never been there, I can tell you that Barbados is a small country, only 166 square miles, and it’s possible to drive around the whole island in one day. Surrounded by the crystal-clear waters of the Caribbean Sea, it is divided into 11 parishes. It is blessed with friendly people, and a glorious tropical climate and is a place to enjoy delicious food and drinks. I can’t recommend it highly enough.

Well in November of last year, after what seemed like a very long time waiting, I was fortunate enough to take a trip home to my Motherland. Whilst enjoying my own little “Heaven on Earth”, I found myself reflecting on the real Heaven and what it will be like. OK, I know God created this planet, certain parts of which are breathtaking. However, my mind still boggles when I try to comprehend how marvellous the place is where I will spend eternity. As a child, I read some wonderful children’s stories. Stories full of larger-than-life characters, magical places and extraordinary events. I knew the stories were unreal but that wasn’t the point. At such a young age, heaven also felt a bit like a fairy tale.

As I grew, Heaven became very real and appealing. One day instead of visiting my tropical paradise, the real heaven will be my permanent home. How wonderful is that? As I enjoyed an early morning walk along the beach, my toes in the sand and the sea gently lapping on the shoreline, it dawned on me that there may not be a sea in Heaven. Now, you may be surprised to hear that brought a smile to my face, that is just my opinion regarding whether there will be sea or not, but please do let me know if you know different.

However, those who know me will know that I am not a strong swimmer and that, in my younger years, I was afraid of going into the sea. Fearful that a big wave would come and wash me away. One reason for this was that as a child my grandmother used to tell me how dangerous the sea could be because “it doesn’t have a back door!” I am more confident now but still quietly glad I won’t have to brave the waves in Heaven. Psalm 23 tells us that God:

leads us beside the quiet waters and restores or refreshes our soul.

Psalm 23:2-3

I felt the presence of God walking alongside me guiding me along the right paths for His name’s sake. Another verse which speaks to me is Psalm 8 which describes:

the birds in the sky, and the fish in the sea, all that swim the paths of the seas.

Psalm 8:8

That verse has such great meaning as it speaks about King David reflecting upon the majesty of God that is displayed throughout His Kingdom.

My Kingdom life started when I was seven years old at my local church, The Gospel Hall, for it was then I gave my life to the Lord. Did I know all there was to know about Heaven and fully understand the consequences of that step? No. What I did know, was that there is a God, a God who loves and cherishes me and to be a child of His was everything to me. As I got older, I learned more about God, His Kingdom and His plan for me and so, at the age of seventeen I went through the waters of baptism. Of course, even then, I still didn’t understand all of the ins and outs of being a Christian. But, do you know what? That doesn’t matter. Being a follower of Jesus is a journey, a journey that will continue until the day I go to Glory.

There have been lots of hurdles along the way, some of which I sailed over and some of which caused me to stumble. However, God has always been there to lift me up, dust me down and help me back on my way. I’m still learning, still making mistakes but, most importantly, I’m still here, serving He who saved me all those years ago. So, please don’t get discouraged when things don’t go right for you or when you mess up. If you believe, God by His grace, will find a place for you in Heaven.

What is Heaven like? Nobody can say but as one songwriter said:

I can only imagine
What it will be like
When I walk by Your side
I can only imagine
What my eyes would see
When Your face is before me
I can only imagine
Surrounded by Your glory
What will my heart feel?
Will I dance for You Jesus?
Or in awe of You be still?
Will I stand in Your presence?
Or to my knees, will I fall?
Will I sing hallelujah?
Will I be able to speak at all?
I can only imagine

“I Can Only Imagine” by Bart Millard, © 2001, 2002 Simpleville Music

If you are a Follower of Jesus, I know I will one day see you in Heaven. If you are not sure what the future holds for you, please get in touch via the All Nations website, and someone will be pleased to chat with you.

Every week one of our members shares a short thought aiming to inspire you for the week. You can watch previous Thought For The Week videos by clicking here.