Forever…

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Forever. 

Have you ever stopped and really thought about that word?

We have all heard it and it is a common word we have all said in some context.

I have always loved words. Well, obviously. My deep love of words led me here.

I like to meditate on words and look up the exact definition of them. So, I looked up what forever means:

For all future time; always. 

Continually, lasting and permanent.

Forever holds so much gravity.

I think sometimes we all can get caught up in life and worldly desires, that we forget about forever, because life has a way of feeling like forever, is a long time away from the present moment we are sitting in now.

But as I said, forever holds more gravity than I believe we all understand. 

Forever, in definition, means permanent. And we should all feel the urgency in that word, when it is about our eternity.

As a believer in Jesus, my core beliefs and foundation rest in the beautiful and sacred pages of scripture.  

When you give your life to Jesus, believe wholeheartedly in Him and live for Him, you are given a beautiful gift. As it says in 1 John 5:13, “I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life.” 

I believe eternal life is promised to all who believe and live for Jesus. 

That means when we die, we don’t really die.

When we believe in Christ  and live for Christ, we become a new creation and we are rewarded the beautiful gift of eternal life, spent with Jesus in heaven.

We do not have to work for it, we are gifted it by faith in Jesus and when Jesus made His walk to the cross, he was paying the largest tab in the worldly restaurant for all of us. He took everyone’s sin and chose us over himself that day many years ago. And that changed everything for humans.

Eternal life is the most beautiful gift believers are promised in God’s word. The hope of heaven carries you through the hard times in life, when challenges and sorrows feel like too much, that hope is always with us.

  

It is hard here on earth to contemplate what heaven is really like. Heaven is such a supernatural and amazing place, we as humans will not fully comprehend it, until we are there. 

But I like how it was explained on a podcast I listen to. He said, do you know that feeling after a long vacation when you walk into your home? You feel safe, it’s cozy, the feeling of your own bed is one of a kind feeling, and you just feel.. home. Multiply that feeling times a billion. That is what heaven will be like. That amazing feeling of coming home. 

Heaven will be a beautiful place, more than we can imagine.

Who wouldn’t want an eternal home like that?

We will feel the highest love we have ever felt in heaven and finally see Jesus face to face.

What an amazing moment that will be.

Honestly, one of the hardest things for my heart to think about is, that some people will never believe in Jesus and get to heaven. 

Sometimes I wish I could save people. 

Even when I witness people that do not believe in Jesus and say something bad, my first thought is anger, because I get defensive inside for Jesus. But then my next feelings are sadness. I just want to make them believe, so they can experience the love of Christ and so they will have an eternity that is light instead of darkness. 

I honestly cannot imagine my life without Jesus in it.

I can say confidently and boldly, I would not be here alive and breathing today, without Jesus.

I have seen Him work in my life and He is real to me. So when I open up my bible, I know and feel in my bones, that all the words ARE the TRUTH. 

And, the truth is, not everybody gets to experience that eternity that I just explained above..

God’s word talks about it in multiple places. But these verses in Hebrews caught my eye.

In Hebrews 3:12-14  it says:

“See to it, brothers and sisters, that none of you has a sinful unbelieving heart that turns away from the living God. But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called, today, so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness. We have come to share in Christ, if indeed we hold our original conviction firmly to the very end.”

It goes on to say and give an example with Moses people in Egypt. They sinned and did not believe wholeheartedly in the Lord.

Verses 18 and 19 highlight what would happen and it’s very significant that shows us:

“And to whom did God swear that they would never enter his rest if not to those who disobeyed? So we see that they were not able to enter, because of their unbelief.”

Their unbelief is what led to not being able to enter God’s kingdom and all the beauty there.

There is a different eternal experience for non believers. It will not be restful or peaceful. People who reject Jesus will not get to experience all the beauty that God has planned for those who do believe and live for Him. And I honestly just feel sad and scared for those people. I truly am saying this in the most real and humble way. I see other believers say, well I don’t care what happens to them as long as I believe I know where I am going..those comments make me sad too.  We shouldn’t judge and not care about humanity. It makes me sad when people call politicians evil or just people in general. And that people can’t wait for them to get what’s coming to them.  Especially when believers are the ones who are saying that. That is a huge heart problem. At the end of the day, we do not know the demons they are facing or what kind of challenges they have in their life and we should always think that way and be kind. Most people are doing the best they can and yes some fall off God’s path for them but we all have at some point. 

As I was writing this, I listened to a sermon on exactly this topic. It felt very serendipitous and It was exactly what I was thinking and I feel I need to share what he said. He said we should not have more judgment for people who do not believe but more compassion. We should all care about people and instead of judging and saying, they are going to get what’s coming to them, we should pray for them wholeheartedly and truly care about their lives and souls. That really resonated with me and has been exactly what has been on my mind and what I have witnessed a bit lately. So, I felt like I needed to add that to this blog because I know God wants some heart out there to know that. Let’s choose compassion over judgment.

I can understand why people may not believe or have a hard time knowing what is real. This world is broken and we have all experienced pain of some kind. Sin has corrupted the world we live in and has made it a different place than what God originally intended.

Like I said earlier, we can get caught up in this world, that we feel like forever or eternity is a long way off, so we do not feel like our faith is urgent. But I believe that our faith is THE most urgent matter while living on earth.

A very wise person I know said it perfect:

“There’s space between heaven and earth and people get lost in the realm of human. Just because we can’t see it, does not mean it isn’t there or real.”

We may not be able to see God physically right now on earth or see heaven, but it is very much real and closer than we think.

If you have felt confused about God or do not know where you stand with God, I would say to call out to Him and ask him to show Himself to you. Ask Him to show you He is with you. That He has a beautiful plan for you.

When you are open and ask with a pure heart, He will work in your life in ways you could not imagine.

Being secure in God and finding comfort in all He promises you, is what helps the most when life gets hard. I don’t know what I would do without God and cannot imagine people that have no hope.

Believing and living for Jesus, is the greatest life you will ever live.

Will it always be easy?  No. 

Life with Jesus doesn’t mean you won’t experience challenges, but it does mean He will always be by your side through them. And when you do go through things, you have the greatest hope anyone could ever have. You will always have the hope of heaven ahead and someone that loves you so wholly.

Who wouldn’t want something like that to believe in and look forward to?

Especially with the kinds of trials we face and the kind of brokenness that does exist in the world, having God’s love through those moments gives you a peace that no worldly thing could ever provide. 

I always say this but the world NEEDS Jesus. People are starving for hope and I’m here to remind you that Jesus is that hope you are searching for.

I want to close with this question that I thought of while writing this:

How would you feel if you couldn’t walk into your house?

Imagine if you didn’t have the right key or there was this force that you could not walk through the door and have access to all your belongings or experience that “home” feeling again.

I would feel anxious and scared if I could not get into my home ever again.

If we are not urgent about our faith, live for God, and not turn from our sin and repent, we will never be able to enter our ultimate home that God has prepared for us. We will not get to experience all that God desires for us. We will not enter His rest. We will never feel that home feeling again and only feel that anxiety that comes with being homeless.

I am not saying this to be intense or weird, I am sharing what God has made me feel. Some people may call it crazy but I know it to be true. God’s word is real and alive and eternity is something we should all be mindful of.

I’m also not saying this like I am above anyone. I rejected God before, many times and have lived in sin and made too many mistakes to count. We are all on our own path and we all are human with questions about life and eternity. I still struggle greatly in many areas and sometimes am left at the end of the day feeling alone in my struggles. But the truth keeps me going and I feel that joy rise up again in my weary soul. God is right with me and guiding me and He is for you too. That ultimate hope of heaven and not feeling those human ways someday make me excited and peaceful.

 I hope you feel that ultimate hope through this and truly turn toward Jesus if you have not fully. He is there with you through all the ups and downs and accepts you as you are.

How amazing to think that Jesus walks every hill and valley, cries with you, rejoices with you and someday you will meet your creator and can talk about all of it. What an amazing thing to live for and look forward to.

I hope you feel peace and hope when you read this and keep running with God. 

All for Jesus,

Steph

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