“And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.” (John 14:3)
I like to think about the New Jerusalem, our home that is waiting for us. It is 1,500 miles wide, long and high, monstrous in size and has twelve foundations, but I do not think of those foundations as built upon each other, nor do I think of a cube in shape, instead I see in my mind a foundation in one place and another perhaps a few hundred miles to the south and a few hundred miles higher up, almost, as it were, twelve cities if you will within that space.
My wonderful wife and I like to imagine the markets, grocery stores, shopping areas and food courts that are there, and corelate them with the final part of Psalm 16:11, “Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore.” Parks to sit and speak at length with those who will live eternally in our forever home, sporting events where the game is what truly matters, not who wins or loses, but the adventure and entertainment of the competition.
I do not know why the Lord said He was going to go and prepare this place when He simply spoke the words and all creation came into being, but it is what He said, and I believe Him. He also said, “Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.” (2 Tim. 3:12)
I do not believe one can relish in peace if they have not known strife, in rest if they have not experienced turmoil, or in joy if they do not personally know the meaning of deep sorrow.
Where we are going is home, this is not our home, you know that, so, and I mean no offense to my brothers and sisters in Christ, if you find yourself content here in this life, then stop, today. “For he looked for a city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God.” (Heb. 11:10)
To quote a very old saying, “Home is where the heart is,” and the Word of God says, “For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.” (Matt. 6:21)
I see the New Jerusalem as home, and my mind wanders to it quite often, attempting to imagine what is in store for us, while at the same time keeping 1 Corinthians 2:9 in my thoughts, “But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.”
I offer you something to contemplate here that none of us alive have an answer for, but it is well worth considering when you think about home, and I will use the analogy of sports to mention it. If you like to bowl at a bowling alley, in heaven if you did so and bowled a perfect game each time, a three hundred, would you enjoy that sport after a while? What about golfing, would a hole in one off every tee soon make that sport lose its luster?
There are certain foods I do not like, so I doubt very much I will like them in heaven. Can you eat all you want to there; would you want to? These thoughts may seem rather frivolous, but the God of hope has given them to us for just that reason, so that we will continue to hope, so that we will seek His face continuously, so that our joy may be full.
I ask you to look at that second line in Psalm 16:11 again, “In thy presence is fulness of joy.” There will be days when all of us, men and women, angels and seraphim will go to a place and in that place, we will worship the Most High God, praising His name, exalting Him above the heavens, and in those moments we will experience the fulness of joy, then, at least in my imagination, my beautiful wife and I will walk down to one of the cafes, perhaps with some of our new found friends, talking about the week to come, enjoying fellowship with our brothers and sisters in Christ as we never could here.
This is all of course conjecture on my part, but it helps me at times to see the truth of Philippians 4:7, “And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”