My favorite gospel tract is called, “When I Think Of Heaven.” It’s written by Joni Eareckson Tada, who is paralyzed from her neck down because of a diving accident during her teenage years. Joni admits that thinking about heaven isn’t always easy, especially since we have to die to get there, unless Jesus returns first! Yet God works through trials to help us focus our minds on heaven.
As one who lives, travels, and ministers in a wheelchair, Joni writes confidently about heaven: “There’s not a doubt in my mind that I’ll be fantastically more excited and ready for it than if I were on my feet. You see, suffering gets us ready for heaven. Heaven becomes our passion.”
The apostle Paul knew that kind of passion. We groan for heaven, he said, not because we long to die, but because we long to really live, to be with our Lord forever (2 Cor. 5:6-8). But until then, “we walk by faith, not by sight” (v.7).
I recently heard about an elderly gentleman who was greeted in this way: “Nice to see you in the land of the living!” “Oh, I’m not in the land of the living,” he replied. “I’m in the land of the dying. But I look forward to being in the land of the living soon when I’m in heaven.” That man’s heart is already there! Can that be said of you?
To see His face, this is my goal,
The deepest longing of my soul;
Through storm and stress my path I'll trace
Till, satisfied, I see His face! —Chisholm
The gains of heaven will more than compensate for the losses of earth.