I remember laying in bed as a child and staring up at the wall and thinking about death. I was 6-9 years old at this time and it's one of my strongest childhood memories. I gave my heart to The Lord when I was 9 years old, but prior to that, I would think a lot about life and death. I would just stare at this certain place on the wall and wonder what the purpose of life was. Why do we live on earth and then just die? Die. The end. It seemed so pointless to me that this was all there was to life. And I had many many nights of these ponderings. Sounds odd and deep for such a young child, doesn't it?
Actually it shouldn't, because Ecclesiastes 3:11 tells us that God has set eternity in the hearts of men. Little did I realize at the time, but The Lord was drawing me to Himself. I was created for eternity! You were created for eternity! We were created to live with the eternal God throughout all of eternity! There was a time that you and I did not exist, but from the moment we were created and our hearts began beating, we will never cease to exist! Physical death is not the end. For anyone.
Understanding that we are a three part being helps immensely when we are processing this event called death. We are a spirit. We have a soul, (our mind, will, and emotions) which is also part of our spirit being, and we live in a body, or as I like to refer to it, our earth suit. Our body is simply what houses our eternal spirit man here on earth. One day, however, our physical bodies will also put on immortality (at the sound of the trump!). It's so helpful to also know that the spirit realm is more real than the physical realm, for the physical realm that we see was created from the spirit realm, or the eternal realm.
Because of the early awareness in my life of eternal things, heaven has always been very real to me. I thank God for that! For those who have called on the Name of Jesus and made Him their Lord and Savior, when we take our last breath on earth, we inhale our very next breath in Heaven with Jesus and all of our loved ones who have gone on before us. Wow! How I love Him for this!! What comfort, what joy, and what peace this brings. The real us never dies, we just move from earth to heaven!
We are confident, yes, well pleased rather to be absent from the body and to be present with the Lord. (II Corinthians 5:8 NKJV). To be absent from this physical body is to be present with The Lord! Praise God forevermore!
For those who have rejected Jesus as their Lord and Savior, their next breath is taken in hell, eternally separated from God, from life, from love, from any comfort and hope. Again, we are an eternal being. There is no end. If you don't know for sure where you will spend eternity and if you've never made Jesus your Lord, all you have to do is call on Him!
For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. (Romans 10:13)
Thinking on eternity has a way of bringing our everyday living into perspective, doesn't it? What are we really living for? What really matters? How are we treating people, the ONLY thing of eternal value? It's been said many times that the only thing we can take to heaven with us is people. How true this really is.
We must be living for eternity!