I have been trying to reflect on lessons God has been teaching me throughout the pandemic of 2020. Here’s what I have so far
1) All plans are tentative
2) Slow down
3) Touch with words
4) Choose to focus on what you still have
5) Life is very fragile
6) The church is both gathered and scattered
7) Just do today
When on a journey, sometimes it helps to simply focus on the next step, but other times it helps to focus on the destination. During the Covid pandemic I have found it helpful to remind myself that Covid is a temporary problem. Covid is not eternal, it will someday pass away. I believe that because of heaven. I have always loved John’s description of heaven found in Revelation 21:2-4.
2 And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. 3 And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Behold, the dwelling placeof God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people,and God himself will be with them as their God. 4 He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.”
My favorite part of this description is what is NOT going to be in heaven. Specifically, there will be no death, mourning, crying, or pain! The pandemic has been filled to the brim with all four of those things.
Thinking about heaven can help us get through major problems on earth. The author of the book of Hebrews tells us that Jesus himself did this to help himself endure the torture of the crucifixion. He encourages us to look to Jesus, “who for the joy that was set before him, endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of God.
I have found it helpful to ask God to give me a “pilgrim perspective” about my life on earth. I don’t really belong on earth, my real, eternal home is in heaven. I’m just temporarily passing through earth on the way to my final destination.
Reflections: How often do you think about heaven? Ask God to give you a “pilgrim perspective” about your life on earth.
These all died in faith, not having received the things promised, but having seen them and greeted them from afar, and having acknowledged that they were strangers and exiles on the earth. 14 For people who speak thus make it clear that they are seeking a homeland. 15 If they had been thinking of that land from which they had gone out, they would have had opportunity to return. 16 But as it is, they desire a better country, that is, a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared for them a city.