Wednesday, June 8, 2011


OK, you’re walking around in Heaven.  You’ve been home about three weeks, and it’s so great!  You have Sabbath dinner with Jesus; sitting on the banks of the Sea of Glass.  During the week you’ve been catching up with old friends and making new ones.  Like one song says, you “see a million faces and recognize every one.” 

And look at the faces!  There’re David, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Matthew, Mark, Luke – not to mention Ruth, Esther, Eve, and Mary.  And don’t forget post-Bible people like Martin Luther, John Wycliffe, C. S. Lewis, and George MacDonald.

Every week there’s a Vespers program called, “Chat with the Patriarchs”.  But, just hearing one patriarch per week – wow – that’ll take FOREVER!  OK, so, forever really isn’t that big of an issue anymore, but still… You want to talk to them one-to-one!  You make a list of the folks you want to talk to and some questions you want to ask.  You don’t want to get flustered and forget something important, right?

Think about it.  You can ask anyone you want, anything you want.  Imagine it!  Who would you want to talk to first?  What would you ask them?

Now, I’ve thought about this before and there is a group of people in the Bible that I am really interested in talking to.  These people are usually not talked about directly; sometimes we don’t even learn their names.  Their being there is kind of “understood”.  Can you think of who these people are?  The parents of the characters we love to read about in the Bible.

For instance, I’d love to talk to Mary’s mom and dad.  Wouldn’t you? What must their parenting skills been like that they raised a girl who God would trust to raise His son?  And what about Hannah, Samuel’s mother?  I mean, we know her name, but what an amazing mom that she could instill such principles in Samuel’s mind in the couple of years she had to mold him that lasted him his entire life?

Oh, and what about Naomi.  She was able to raise two sons, mostly alone, not an easy thing at any time, but in a foreign country where everybody spoke a different language and worshipped a different God.  And yet, Naomi did it so well that both boys picked honorable wives in a country where they were pretty few and far between.  Which brings us to Ruth and her mother.  The family was not Jewish, but Ruth’s mom raised an excellent daughter.  Wouldn’t she be an interesting person to talk to if she were in Heaven?

Then there’s Daniel and his three buddies.  Their parents managed to raise teenagers who weren’t afraid to be different from the rest of the crowd, even when the consequences could have been death, and nobody would have known the difference.  They should have written a book for us.

Isaac?  Yes we know quite a bit about Abraham and Sarah, but not much about their parenting techniques.  They managed to really get God’s message across.  So much so that when asked, Isaac calmly lay down on the altar his father built and agreed to be a sacrifice.  That’s some amazing parenting!

Of course, there are other conversations that would be harder to have.  Can you imagine talking to Eli and having him explain to you how he felt as he watched his sons move away from God?  Think about Samson’s parents.  They followed God’s instructions for bringing up Samson and he still went astray.  What about Judas’ parents? What do you think they would have to say about the differences between the way they raised him and how he ended up?  Maybe they were OK with it?  Who knows?

And, of course, Adam and Eve – from immortals walking with God to losing essentially both of their sons because one rejected God – all in one lifetime.  Imagine the heartbreak.

I’m not trying to make any judgments about who might or might not be in Heaven.  I’m just imagining how amazing it will be to meet all these people in Heaven, and sit and talk to them for as long as I like.

Who would you like to talk to?  These folks are just a few.  What about the parents of Noah? David? Gideon? John the Baptist?  What would you like to as him (or her)?  Can you imagine the answers to you questions? And, best of all, a friend reminded me this week that once we’re actually in Heaven, none of this will matter because we’ll be with Jesus.  
When the ransomed are redeemed from the earth, the city of God will be opened to you. . . . Then the harp will be placed in your hand, and your voice will be raised in songs of praise to God and to the Lamb, by whose great sacrifice you are made partakers of His nature and given an immortal inheritance in the kingdom of God.” E. G. White      {ML342}


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