I’ve had this thought before, so maybe I’ve mentioned it before. But it’s been on my mind again, so I’m mentioning it again. And, actually, it’s not even an original thought I had – totally read it in one of C.S.Lewis’ books. Not sure which one.
But it’s the idea that we’re immortal. All of us. Each and every one. Which, okay, if you’ve been around the Christian world at all, this doesn’t surprise you. You might not have thought about it that way – parents are all the time telling us we’re mortal, not to do something stupid and kill ourselves.
But, the fact is, the important part of you – the spiritual part – is immortal. That part of you WILL go on forever. And that part of everyone else will do so as well. Of EVERYONE else. Sure, your Mom. Sure, your best friend. Sure that cute boy. But also that girl who glares at you in math class. The annoying little brother who got peanut butter on your favorite shirt. The girl who just rubs you the wrong way. The girl you think is as fake as they get. The girl who wants your boyfriend. The girl who hurt you so bad you make sure that every day she knows the pain of what she did. The ex-boyfriend that you broke up with over text.
They’re immortal too.
Which means that sure, at the end of the school year, when they leave the office, when you move away, you might never see them again, and then you don’t have to deal with them…IN THIS LIFETIME.
But guess what?
Guess who else ALSO has the option of going to heaven? Yep. Your mom, your best friend, that cute boy, the girl who glares at you in math class, the annoying little brother who got peanut butter on your favorite shirt, the girl who hurt you so bad you make sure that every day she knows the pain of what she did. All of them.
So you get to ‘deal’ with them in heaven, in ‘paradise’…FOREVER!!! No escaping. No avoiding personality quirks. You get to deal, head-on, face-to-face. You’ll have time to tell them every little thing they did that hurt you. And they’ll get to do the same back.
Kinda scary, if you ask me.
Now I realize the easy thing is to think that they’ll end up in hell while everyone whom you enjoyed will end up in your corner of heaven…but that’s not necessarily the case. The Bible says we’ll be surprised who’s in heaven and who’s not. So never assume you won’t have to deal with someone for eternity.
Think back over your last encounter with the little brother, with the girl who is fake, the girl who is so full of herself. How did you treat them last? (Notice I didn’t ask how they treated you? That’s not up to you; you’re not responsible for that.) Did you show them the love of God as we’ve been commanded? God sees their value along with yours. You don’t get to treat them any less loving than God does. What happens if the next time you see them IS in heaven…when you have all the time of eternity just to sit and chat about life, about how you treated each other, about all the stuff you’re avoiding right now.
So treat each other with the dignity, respect, and love God calls us to. Talk about the things that are coming between the two of you NOW. Ask God to give you HIS eyes for the person you can hardly stand to be in the same room with. Who knows, but they might be the first one you see in heaven.