Text: John 13:36-14:6, Luke 24:50-53, Revelation 21:22-22:7
And while He was blessing them, He left them and was carried up into heaven. After worshiping Him, they returned to Jerusalem with great joy.
- Luke 24:51-52, HCSB
Our family of four moved across town into a new home last month. We’ve been planning toward this move for half a decade, and we’ve been anticipating this specific house since we fell in love with it months ago. But still, move-in week was unexpectedly difficult and clunky, as move-in weeks often are.
I had this bright idea to seize the new move as an opportunity to replace the ragged bath towels we’d received for our wedding 12 years ago with fluffy, new ones. I even sprung for new dishcloths and fresh toothbrushes and, ahem, new toilet brushes. I wanted it to feel like a happy, fresh start for all of us, but it turns out all the switcharoos made our new place feel even more unfamiliar than it already was.
For at least two weeks I woke up confused about where I was every morning. It took me a good, long while to get my bearings with light switches and kitchen cabinets and the trick to opening the windows more than eight inches. On our third night in the new house I cried like a big baby to Ryan, “It doesn’t feel like home—we don’t have any happy memories here yet, none of our own dirt, and these new towels don’t absorb anything! (sob, sob, sob) I wish, for one more night, we could fall asleep in our old bedroom.”
Bless our hearts. It was an emotional season and we were overtired, but those feelings of being disoriented and displaced were real for all four of us.
Has moving ever felt like that to you? Did it take a while for a new house (or city or country or dorm room) to feel like “yours”?
In those early weeks, my thoughts often wandered to Heaven. I thought about what Jesus said to His disciples in His farewell discourse before His arrest (John 13:31-16:33).
“Lord,” Simon Peter said to Him, “where are You going?”
Jesus answered, “Where I am going you cannot follow Me now, but you will follow later… In My Father’s house are many dwelling places; if not, I would have told you. I am going away to prepare a place for you. If I go away and prepare a place for you, I will come back and receive you to Myself, so that where I am you may be also. You know the way to where I am going…” (John 13:36, 14:2-4, HCSB)
I don’t know anything about Heaven outside of what the Bible tells us. I’ve never seen a floor plan for this new space, and I regret to admit I wasn’t invited to sit in on the tile selection meeting (though I hear we’re in for a treat!). Two things I do know: I know Who is preparing that place, and I know He is preparing it with me in mind. It’s personal, and it’s a promise.
When our time comes to meet the Father face-to face, we won’t be displaced or disoriented for a moment. We won’t know homesickness because we will finally be in the Home our souls have longed for from the beginning. If we are His, Heaven is where our souls will finally find rest.
When Christ ascended, the disciples worshipped, then returned home. When we are finally in the presence of the Lamb, worship will be our rest, and we will already be home.
And the city has no need of sun or moon to shine on it,
for the glory of God gives it light,
and its lamp is the Lamb.
And there will no longer be any curse.
They will see His face, and His name will be on their foreheads.
Night will no longer exist.
And they will reign forever and ever.
Psst – want to read more about Heaven today? Here are a few great places to start—
The Throne Room of Heaven: Revelation 4:1-11
The New Creation: Revelation 21:1-8
The New Jerusalem: Revelation 21:9-27
Eden’s Restoration: Revelation 22:1-5