My idea of death and specifically when we are brought before the Father differ from others. I’m not saying I’m right and others are wrong… but I won’t every go back to “old school” thinking. I’ve heard all sorts of renditions of how the epic culmination of human history will unfold. However, no matter how much someone has studied no mind can conceive nor words adequately describe the zenith of creation.
Whatever we choose to believe about life after death, paradise, the millennial kingdom or our ultimate destiny in heaven, one thing is certain, at some point every single created soul will be ushered into the throne of God to give an account for our lives.
People have been deluded by the idea that God is the hippy guy up stairs, the cool big brother who winks with approval at our wayward, self-indulgent foolishness and self-promoting lust for attention.
People have also been terrified by the idea that God will roll out some horrific video footage of the hidden aspects of our lives exposing dirty little secrets and shaming us for the error of our ways before a throng of witnesses, thereby causing dread of eminent punishment.
For some the fear of such justice would serve them well. However, that’s not the heart of God toward his redeemed children as expressed through the life of Jesus and his costly sacrifice and lavish love for humanity.
Don’t get me wrong – I have no doubt that God will step into time and rend the veil that separates us from the fullness of his presence. Life as we know it will stop and cease to exist. There will come a time when he judges the words and deeds of men and women, individually. He will cause fire to scorch every motive and “work” in our lives that did not honor him, serve others, express love to the broken or speak truth in the darkness. Whatever gifts, talents, opportunities, platform or spheres of influence he has given us, we will be accountable for. It is our challenge, calling, right and privilege to walk in this.
While everything in me feels certain I will collapse at the radiance of his countenance, the daughter in me dares to believe I will recognize sweet familiarity to the degree I’ve invested in him. What a thrill that will be, the pinnacle of the search for meaning.
It is not my intent to, in any way, diminishing the majesty of a Holy, fierce and righteous, ruling King and God. As I have more urgently pressed into my relationship with God and reflected on the faithfulness that has guarded my days and the companionship that has kept my soul, I accepted his invitation to be known and to know him as my Abba Father. I relish with great anticipation the idea of that climatic first moment when his eyes meet mine.
For me – one of the primary elements of that first encounter in the presence of the Almighty will be as he enthusiastically stretches open his arms to receive me and draws me close in an all-encompassing embrace that dissolves every doubt, hesitation, concern or disgrace. It a split second all questions are answered, swallowed up in indescribable waves of love and understanding.
I love pictures. Captured moments frozen in time enabling us recall the joy, splendor, sorrow, victory, abundance, simplicity, devastation and celebration of life and relationships. Photographs transport us in time to places we’ve move away from, seasons we’ve long forgotten, people we have loved and the moments we have shared.
I believe our heavenly father, Creator of heaven and earth and all that it contains, keeps a “photo album” of sorts for every soul; a collection of highlights of lives well lived. Continue reading