n September 2006 I made a phone call to a friend of mine in Manado, Indonesia, who had lost his dear wife from cancer. For some time on the phone we exchanged words of lamentation over the loss of this loving Christian woman. As I listened to the words of this friend whose life was shattered by this loss, my heart went to the words of hope spoken by our Lord Jesus Christ, “Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me. In my Father’s house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am” (John 14:1-3).
Our heavenly Father is well aware of the toils and challenges of this sinful world we live in. It grieves God to see His children going through pain of any kind. God has a plan to bring all this to an end. He says, “I am making everything new!” (Rev. 21:5). He is preparing a better home for us.
During our waiting time on earth, our Father bids us trust Him. Our hearts can easily get troubled. We are troubled sometimes even by the apparent delay of the coming of our Lord Jesus. His words to us are “Do not let your hearts be troubled.”
We have no other hope but this hope that Jesus is coming again. This is the blessed hope upon which hangs our anticipation of relief from torture and pain by sin and the devil. Paul exclaims and says, “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him” (1 Cor. 2:9).
When I contemplate a place where there is “no more death or mourning or crying or pain” (Rev. 21:4), it just overwhelms me with joy. It is good enough on earth when you spend a weekend or a summer holiday with people you love. But imagine 1,000 years with Jesus and with people we love! “Blessed and holy are those who have part in the first resurrection. The second death has no power over them, but they will be priests of God and of Christ and will reign with him for a thousand years” (Rev. 20:6). And it will be more than 1,000 years; it will be eternity!
Why would I, why would anyone, want to miss out on such an invitation of hope? Is it the desire for something firm on earth? Is it the desire for wealth on earth? Is it the desire for status on earth? “For everything in the world--the cravings of sinful man, the lust of his eyes and the boasting of what he has and does--comes not from the Father but from the world. The world and its desires pass away, but the man who does the will of God lives forever” (1 John 2:16, 17). I hope the answer is that nothing will keep any of us from experiencing the fulfillment of that blessed hope, the hope of being united with our beloved ones and dwelling together for eternity with God.
Yours in hope,