While we are here on earth, we sigh because we want to live in that heavenly home. – 2 Cor 5;2 (CEV)From Martin Hayward:
I enjoy watching re-runs of the TV architecture series, “Grand Designs”. Each programme starts with a family talking to the presenter, Kevin McCloud, about their dream house. Often this will be a building on a scale way beyond anything you or I could imagine living in and calling home; most will take an eye-watering budget to achieve. And so, for many of the aspiring builders, the first step on the way to achieving their dream is to sell their existing home in order to raise funds for the new-build. This means that the families – small children, dogs, cats and all – often end up living in cramped, cold and damp caravans on the muddy building site. Sometimes this goes on for years during which time Kevin injects a bit of human interest into the story by highlighting the financial and practical setbacks they face on the way to the realisation of their vision.
But the striking thing is the way in which these families are willing to face all sorts of problems head on and put up with any amount of inconvenience and discomfort because they know that their dream is becoming reality. “It will all be worth it in the end.” Every one of the grand-designers shows the ability to keep their eyes firmly fixed on the goal ahead and to brush aside the inconveniences that inevitably crop up on the route to their ideal home.
And that is exactly analogous to the situation that Paul says that Christians find themselves in whilst in this world. As he wrote to the Corinthians (2 Cor 5, 6-8 Message):
This is why we live with such good cheer. You won’t see us drooping our heads or dragging our feet! Cramped conditions here don’t get us down. They only remind us of the spacious living conditions ahead. It’s what we trust in but don’t yet see that keeps us going. Do you suppose a few ruts in the road or rocks in the path are going to stop us? When the time comes, we’ll be more than ready to exchange exile for homecoming.
As Christians here and now we already enjoy the immense privilege of meeting with Christ every day through prayer, his word the Bible, and as we share with him our concerns and anxieties. But to be fully effective in the present we need to keep our vision of the future sharp, focussed and always before us. Heaven is all about God; it exists for his glory and is where we shall live with Jesus. He who knew and loved us even before we were formed in the womb waits to welcome us into his presence and show us to that place he is preparing for us. The place where we belong and where we will feel everlastingly secure.
Now that is God’s Grand Design!