Yesterday, Anne Alexander, a dear friend and longtime missionary who is grieving the recent loss of four loved ones, wrote:
“Today I woke early with the thought that my passport is for the Kingdom of Joy, but that I have a long-term visa for the Country of Grief. It helps to remember that my King is saving a wonderful and permanent home for his kids near Him, where I will see these loved ones again. More than that, He often sends me love-messages that encourage me. And sometimes He just lets me cry. I write down His love-messages and remember them. One day we will meet face to face in the Kingdom of Joy, with no more tears.”
I can relate. Along with so many others, I’ve experienced similar losses of late. Just last night, a dear friend who is currently caring for her dying mother, told me she herself may have terminal cancer. Can there possibly be a bright spot in all this darkness? Yes. She and her mother are both devoted children of the King that Anne speaks about. And soon He will wipe away their every tear.
But more than that, God doesn’t simply comfort his children when they arrive, passports in hand. Their former pain and grief will have “passed away.” In a way we can barely grasp, this means our former sufferings and losses will no longer even exist (Isaiah 65:17). Eternity with God isn’t merely an improvement over this world…
It’s a new reality.
“For the heavens will be destroyed by fire and the elements will melt in the heat. But according to God’s promise, we are looking forward to a new heaven and a new earth, where righteousness dwells.”
~2 Peter 3:12-13