The year I turned fifteen, my dad took my older brother and me on a fishing trip to Mexico. But first we had to get to my uncle Bill’s house in Alamogordo, New Mexico. From there we would fly south of the border in his Cessna.
I was reared on the Great Plains of the Southern Midwest (USA), and had never been too far from home. Here, stunted trees follow the mostly dry creek beds. And when you do find water it’s the color of chocolate milk. I was eager for a change of scenery.
Yet the farther west we went the more dry and desolate it became. Driving through the bottom end of the Texas panhandle, the topography resembled the surface of the moon! That’s when I fell asleep in the back seat of our ‘79 Buick.
Shortly before dawn that morning, we stopped at a convenience store in Southeast New Mexico. When the car doors opened the air felt much cooler than the last time we fueled up in the desert. Crawling out of the back seat, squinty eyed, I stumbled toward a giant conifer, the ground underneath it dappled with snow. Half awake I blurted out, “Is this heaven?”
I later learned the tree was a blue spruce and we were at the top of a pass in a scenic little village called Cloudcroft. The crisp mountain air, snow in Spring and the tall trees were things I’d only heard about. Now I was experiencing them in person!
There’s an old southern gospel song called, How Beautiful Heaven Must Be. The tune describes reading about the City of God, but concludes that the actual place must be more than we can imagine.
Kind reader, picture waking up in heaven after leaving this “desert” world.
No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love Him.1 Corinthians 2:9 (NIV)
Or as Paul puts it later in this same letter, “We don’t yet see things clearly. We’re squinting in a fog, peering through a mist. But it won’t be long before the weather clears and the sun shines bright! We’ll see it all then, see it all as clearly as God sees us, knowing him directly just as He knows us!” 1 Corinthians 13:12 (MSG)
There’s a REAL place called heaven. And this isn’t it. But receiving Christ as savior means a one-way ticket!
How beautiful heaven must be!
Note: the video below is me singing the song I mentioned.
🙏❤️prayers and love.