After the unexpected loss of his son, Greg Laurie discovers that heaven is more personal and real, and nearer than it has ever been before.

So, what helps me through this difficult process of mourning and grieving over my son?

Thinking about heaven helps a lot. I think a lot about what my son is doing in heaven. For me, heaven is more personal and real now, and it is nearer than it has ever been before.

We have heard it lamely said, “They are so heavenly-minded that they are no earthly good!” I would suggest that far too many today are so “earthly-minded, they are no heavenly good!”

Keep seeking heaven

We need to know more about heaven!

Why? Paul tells us in Colossians 3:1-2: “Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things” (NIV).

As Randy Alcorn points out in his book, Heaven, to “set your minds” speaks of a diligent, active, single-minded investigation. That is a good description of what I have been doing of late.

Sadly, many of us go through a whole day, or even a week, without one thought of heaven. The verb used in Colossians 3:1-2 is also in the present tense “KEEP SEEKING HEAVEN.”

So we all need to be more “heavenly-minded.” Warren Wiersbe said, “For the Christian, Heaven isn’t simply a Destination; it’s a Motivation.”

But we often wonder, “What is heaven like?”

Let me begin by saying Heaven is an actual place. Jesus said, “I have gone to prepare a place for you.”

We often think of Heaven in a “mystical way.” Clouds, more clouds, and people floating around. Sounds boring! That is not the biblical heaven, but the heaven of Hollywood or cartoons.

The Bible uses many images, ideas, and words to describe heaven.

Heaven is described as paradise

Remember, Jesus said to the thief on the cross, “Today, you will be with me in paradise.” Paul said the same thing when he went to heaven: “It was paradise!” It is a word that is describing “Walled Gardens,” like the King of Persia would have.

Heaven is described as a city

Hebrews 11:10 tells us this city has God as both the Architect and Builder. Hebrews 13:14 says, “For here we do not have an enduring city, but we are looking for the city that is to come” (NIV). Cities have buildings, culture, art, music, goods, services, and events.

Heaven is described as a country

Hebrews 11:16 says, “But now they desire a better, that is, a heavenly country. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for He has prepared a city for them” (NKJV).

A Country, A City, A Garden, Paradise

We tend to think of earth as the real thing, and heaven as the surreal thing. In reality, it’s the other way around. That is why C.S.Lewis described earth as “The Shadowlands.”

Earth is the temporary place where we decide our eternal destiny. It is not home; heaven is.

Heaven is real

Heaven is paradise, a city, a country. Heaven is real. And for you who have loved ones that have gone before you, you need to know that is where they are right now.

Yes, we miss them so badly. But thank God they are in this place that we will soon be joining them in.

Until then, let’s all try to be a lot more “heavenly-minded!”


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