Do you ever feel like just being you is too risky? The cost of authenticity might be rejection, but the payoff brings a bit of heaven down to earth.
Last week I wrote about the benefits of imagining what heaven will be like. I asked, “How would knowing the best possible interpretation impact the way you live today?” One person’s answer demonstrates the shift from despair to hope that I aimed for. He gave me permission to share his answer:
I enjoyed the post you wrote on Heaven. Thanks for posing the question. It gave me a chance to think about what the rest of my life could look like and how it could begin to move in that direction even now.
Knowing what heaven is like and who I am as God’s finished product would change the way I live out the rest of my days on earth.
During a recent checkup, my doctor said, “You look pretty good for someone who almost died a year ago.” Coming face-to-face with death has me thinking more about how I want to be remembered.
If I knew for sure what God plans for me in heaven, I could risk being that person more on earth no matter what others thought of me because I would know it pleased God. I should be doing that anyway, but there is always a struggle to know if I’m being the real me.
I want to:
- be more unselfish, putting others’ needs before mine.
- be more transparent about my feelings and not concerned about how that would look to others.
- speak what is in my heart; I wouldn’t be unkind, but I would be free to disagree with others and risk being rejected and isolated from others.
- be more vulnerable to love others and help them no matter what it cost me emotionally or materially.
- be more humble, living out my purpose of bringing glory to God and doing things that have eternal value, not just what had meaning for my time on earth.
Acting in this way would bring more meaning to my remaining time here, leave an eternal mark, and make something in my life worth remembering to those I leave behind.
Imagining heaven’s best helps me trust God more (I can see why He led me through what He did) and value what He values. I want to see with a better perspective what is really important in this life and also what matters so little because it won’t be coming with me into heaven.
How about you? What will your life look like if you live with no regrets? No guts no glory. When you risk being who God made you to be, God is glorified. AND… when you share in Christ’s suffering today, you will also share in in glory (Romans 8:17).