Nothing gives you such a heavenly perspective and a longing to know what heaven is like, as the death of a loved one. Part of me is in heaven – and longs to go to heaven so that I can be made whole. I heard this precious song by Jason Ingram on another blog – he had written it especially for little Copeland. (You can see Copeland’s memorial video featuring this song here)
The words go:
What is it like to be held in the same arms
that hold the universe?
What is it like to sleep on the chest
of the King of heaven and earth?
When you open your eyes and look on the face
of the Giver of life, the Author of grace
Do you know?
That your days here changed everything,
You’re missed here and will always be
but you’re loved here, the greatest gift of all,
cause our hearts ache for home
What is it like to breathe in and breathe out
without having to fight?
What is it like to be robed in perfection,
no reason to cry
When you feel on your face
your Father’s kiss, his welcome embrace
we prayed for this
you should know…
That your days here changed everything
you’re missed here and will always be
but you’re loved here, the greatest gift of all
cause our hearts ache for home
So twinkle twinkle little star,
we will keep you in our hearts
twinkle twinkle little star,
we will meet you where you are…
He phrased it so perfectly for me…”our hearts ache for home…” I am not depressed, I am not suicidal, I am really, truly doing fine, actually sometimes I worry because I seem to be doing so much better than I had expected. Yet…there are times when I am reminded of my own mortality, such as when I am driving down the road and suddenly realise that I am not wearing a seatbelt. Before, I would have thought: “Oh no, if I were in a car accident now I could die”, and clip it on. Now my thoughts are: “If I had an accident now, I might die. Cool. I might get to see Jenna a bit sooner that I thought.” But… I have a life to live and I know God’s plan is not for me to die just yet. And I clip the seatbelt on.
I have had heaven on my mind a lot lately.
I believe that we can experience moments of ‘heaven here on earth’, which may give us a tiny glimpse of the real thing. Heaven is full of the glory of God, and when I am in a place of glorious worship where the presence of God becomes almost tangible, I can taste heaven in a small way. Those moments are indescribable. They are full of joy and peace, and accompanied by a deep and warm assurance of God’s love. It is because I have experienced those moments that I can say without a shadow of doubt that God is good, merciful, kind, tender, compassionate…the list is endless. I have come to understand that even his judgement, even his chastisement, all flow from a heart that is moved by love. The apostle John said: “God is love.”
Love always seeks an object, and we are the ones over whom God seeks to pour the love that is so part of his character. This gorgeous world we live in was fashioned with us in mind…every leaf, every dainty flower, every spectacular sunset was made for our enjoyment. A God who is so extravagant, who goes to such lengths to show us his love and his glory simply in the nature around us…how much more generous would he be in creating heaven?
It stands to reason that heaven will be filled with everything that is good, everything that is lovely. It will not be a surreal, airy-fairy, other-worldly place either. It will feel like home. Most of all, it will be permeated with that sweet, tender, loving, glorious Presence that I have come to love so much. When I think of Jenna being in that place, right now, as I write this, it brings me so much peace. I know that she feels more vibrantly alive right now than I can ever hope to feel here on this earth. She is truly in a blissful place!
I am sad that she is not here, and I miss her cuteness and her twirly girl-ness. I miss all the pink that used to beautify my laundry basket. I miss the hugs and snuggles and just feeling that little hand in mine. I miss waking up next to her and looking in wonder at the beautiful line of her eyebrows and the perfection of her sleeping face. I miss her songs, and her giggles, and her ‘preachy voice’ when she chastised her brothers. I just miss her.
But I can rejoice too. Much as I’d sometimes like to go to heaven myself and drag her back here, I know that it would be soooooo unfair to her. I pictured her in that place sometime this week and I could only smile. I imagined that she smiled/laughed back at me, with exuberant joy written all over her face.
So…twinkle twinkle my little star…I will meet you where you are…