We’ll have eternity in heaven to celebrate great victories on the old Earth, but we have only this brief window of opportunity now to win those victories. As missionary C. T. Studd said, “Only one life, ’twill soon be past; only what’s done for Christ will last.”
What will last for eternity? Not your car, house, degrees, trophies, or business. What will last for eternity is every service to the needy, every dollar given to feed the hungry, every cup of cold water given to the thirsty, every investment in missions, every prayer for the needy, every effort invested in evangelism, and every moment spent caring for precious children—including rocking them to sleep and changing their diapers. The Bible says we’ll reap in eternity what we’ve planted in this life (Galatians 6:7-8).
Setting our minds on Heaven is a discipline that needs to be learned. Pastors and church leaders should train themselves and their people to be Heaven-minded. This means teaching and preaching about Heaven. It means presenting a biblical theology of Heaven that can shape and transform people’s lives, liberating them from the shallow hopelessness of life centered on a fallen and failing world.
Ask yourself these questions in light of heaven:
- Do I daily reflect on my own mortality?
- Do I daily realize there are only two destinations—Heaven or Hell—and that I and every person I know will go to one or the other?
- Do I daily remind myself that this world is not my home and that everything in it will burn, leaving behind only what’s eternal?
- Do I daily recognize that my choices and actions have a direct influence on the world to come?
- Do I daily realize that my life is being examined by God, the Audience of One, and that the only appraisal of my life that will ultimately matter is his?
- Do I daily reflect on the fact that my ultimate home will be the New Earth, where I will see God and serve him as a resurrected being in a resurrected human society, where I will overflow with joy and delight in drawing nearer to God by studying him and his creation, and where I will exercise, to God’s glory, dominion over his creation?