Wednesday, May 14, 2008

A Prepared Place for a Prepared People

This is what JC Ryle calls heaven. This morning my children slept in later than usual for some odd reason and I had the opportunity to read a book by JC Ryle called Heaven. I realize now how little I think about my eternal home and how much more I ought to be meditating on this place where there will be rest, comfort, and peace forever- where there will be
Christ my King!

Reading this book, I am encouraged in my work and in my relationships. Ryle reminds the reader that, "The family on earth are still at school; they are daily learning wisdom, slowly and with much trouble, and often need reminding by chastisement of forgotten lessons." I am a work in progress. In "school" each day I am growing and becoming a "prepared" person. While the things of life may often seem mundane and we struggle to see the big picture, in eternity "What wondrous wisdom will appear in everything that we had to go through in the days of our flesh." From the long days full of crabby children and dirty diapers to the heavier trials of loss and death, all is part of God's wise and perfect plan. Of relationships, Ryle comments that we seldom meet people with whom we can be completely open with and feel that we are "entirely of one mind with him about religion." He then goes on to say, "But there will be an end of this stage of things in the kingdom of heaven." It is there that "we shall meet our own believing friends once more, at last made perfect, and find that their besetting sins, and our own besetting sins, have all passed away, and there is nothing left in us but grace without corruption!" What a wonderful gathering of the saints that will be- of those we read of in scripture, of those in our lives who have gone before us. And there will be no more parting or saying good bye. "Then the gathering of all true Christians shall be a meeting without parting. There are no such meetings now. We seem to live in an endless hurry, and can hardly sit down to take a breath before we are off again. 'Goodbye' treads on the heels of 'How do you do?' But ,blessed be God, it shall not always be so. The hour cometh and shall soon be here, when 'goodbye' and 'farewell' shall be words that are laid aside and buried for ever."

"We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed" 1 Corinthians 15:51, 52

Forgive me for all the quotes, but I can not attempt to say it better than Ryle! If you want to read more, you can find the book here.

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