What Happens When We Die?

As you can imagine, I have been thinking about heaven and what happens when we die in the last few weeks. The fact that my Father and Mother are together in heaven brings it closer. It gives me a warm feeling to know they are there with Jesus and fellowshiping with all the Saints. I don’t know all that it entails but I know it must be wonderful.

But what do they see or know of us here on earth? No one knows. No one has ever gone and come back to give us a report. Lazarus came back but never spoke of it – or we have no record of it. Saint John is the only one who got to peek into heaven and wrote quite a spectacular account of it. Some of it is hard to understand and some of it is symbolic. There were others who had visions of what it was like and they are all similar – it is spectacular, beyond imagination, dazzling!

Far greater minds than mine have tackled this subject. I’m not interested in all the theology of it…I’m interested as a daughter who lost her “Daddy” and wants to know if he is still present with me in some way. Does he know what’s going on? Does he see my heart; know my struggles?

People tell me they are sorry for my loss. I didn’t lose him – I know where he is. I’m confident of that – and I am confident that I will join him one day. I grieve his absence from “now”.

What about now? There are times, I will admit, that it seems lonely when I think that he is not at home. No. I didn’t get to see him all that often but I knew I could – anytime. Now I can’t. I knew I could pick up the phone and hear his voice. But it’s been a long time since that happened. (And the recordings you hear of him when he was younger does not sound like him, to me. They sound “tinny” and too Southern. Maybe back then that’s what he did sound like and I just don’t remember his voice that way. When he did that CD called, “My Hope” – that’s how I remember his voice.)

And there are times I feel his presence. It’s a warm presence – gentle, kind – like he was.

I shared with the world at his service that my Father showed me what God was like. I see God as warm, kind, gentle. I’m glad I do. So many see Him as harsh and vindictive. I don’t think the Bible teaches that. Yes, He hates sin. He is a holy god and sits in judgment on sin. But when you are washed by the shed blood of Jesus, there is no fear.

Paul tells us that when we are absent from the body we are present with the Lord – like stepping into another room or dimension. We will step into a warm, gentle, kind Presence Who is glad to see us and welcomes us.

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