Sometimes I wonder why our brains have the capacity to wistfully imagine things like Narnia and Middle Earth and Wonderland and Neverland if there were no way to experience them. If you think about it, it almost doesn’t make sense. We can’t imagine letter sounds that we can’t use. We can’t envision colors that don’t exist. We can’t think of what imaginary foods would taste like unless we’re actually remembering something we’ve eaten before.
And yet … we can think of whole worlds we can’t visit. Does it ever make you feel a bit strapped down to planet earth?
Perhaps this is why I don’t imagine Heaven as a very metropolitan place. When I think of a heavenly scene, it looks like an eternal dawn. A place where we can see the earth as it was meant to be — scale mountains, sail the high seas, swim through waterfalls, walk through gardens, even admire architecture — without any constraint on time or energy to do so. Limitless adventure, but no fear of injury to keep us from losing — no, finding — ourselves in the excitement. I imagine the sun and the stars shining at the same time and never disappearing behind a cloud. Perhaps some imagine heaven simply as a glowing, indistinct, ghostly, ethereal domain, but I anticipate it being very tactile and larger-than-life. (Why wouldn’t it be?) Think of a place where every quest and expedition reveals more and more of God , where we discover what really mattered in life, where we find out who He meant us to be. What He named us. How He loves us.
Isn’t that the life we were meant for? Could it be that when we think of those imaginary, fictitious worlds and ache for the dreams they represent, we are really hearing Heaven beckon us home? Could everything beautiful here be a reminder not of what is lost, but what is yet to come?
Didn’t He promise it would all come true?
I’ve never been able to comprehend the idea of eternity … but someday, it will not be a mystery any more.