By Jean Boonstra
But we are looking forward to the new heavens and new earth he has promised, a world filled with God’s righteousness.” (2 Peter 3:13)
Have you ever wondered what Heaven will be like? My friend Joyce did!
Joyce bounced happily up from the supper table. “Daddy!” she squealed. “Are we really going to go and visit Grandma?”
Daddy winked at his happy daughter. “Yes, we are! I got a whole week off from work. Just the two of us are going to visit her!”
“Oh boy!” said Joyce, her brown curls bouncing as she jumped. “I can’t wait to fly on a plane—and I get to miss school! This will be my first time visiting Grandma at her house.”
It was true. Grandma came to visit Joyce often. She brought her jelly made from her homegrown blueberries, and she also brought hand-knit socks made just for Joyce!
Joyce loved Grandma’s visits, but she had never been to visit her. It was a long way to fly and Dad always had to work, so it was just easier for Grandma to visit them. But that was about to change.
The night before their trip, Joyce was too excited to think about sleeping. She got in her PJs, but her eyes were still wide open.
“Joyce!” her Dad called. “Grab the devotional book. How about you read tonight?”
Joyce read the story. It was about Heaven. “Daddy,” she asked. “What is Heaven really like?”
Dad looked thoughtful for a moment. “It’s kind of like Grandma’s house,” he said.
Joyce crinkled her eyebrows, confused.
“You know Grandma and you love her,” Dad explained.
“Yes, Daddy, of course,” Joyce said.
“Well, you’ve never been to Grandma’s house, but I know you’ll love it. Get to bed now,” her Dad answered before she could ask any more questions. “We’re getting up early tomorrow!”
Joyce’s first plane trip wasn’t quite as exciting as she’d expected. Lots of lines and sitting still. Joyce wiggled and squirmed, eager to get to Grandma’s! Impatiently, Joyce waited as her Dad found their rental car and headed down the freeway for Grandma’s.
Finally they pulled up in front of a cozy blue and white house. “Is this it?” Joyce asked, her eyes wide.
Before her Dad could answer, the front door opened and Grandma ran toward them. “Grandma!” Joyce hollered, slamming the car door behind her.
Joyce hugged her Grandma close and smelled in her sweet familiar perfume. “Well, what took you so long?” Grandma teased. “I’ve been waiting all day!”
Joyce giggled and held Grandma’s hand as she ran up the steps. Beside the front door was a blueberry bush. Joyce stopped to smell it. “Smells like jelly!”
Inside, Joyce slowly explored every shelf, piece of furniture and even the refrigerator. The house smelled like Grandma and was full of stuff that Grandma loved.
That night, after a delicious supper of Grandma’s famous lasagna, Joyce curled up in Grandma’s guest bed.
“Daddy,” she whispered dreamily as he tucked her in. “I understand.”
“About what?” he asked.
“Heaven. I do love Grandma’s house because it is full of her. Heaven will be the same because it’s full of God.”
Today, imagine your favorite place on earth. Remember that Heaven will be even better, and make it a wonderful new day—a new day with Jesus!