Right about now most kids across the country are grumbling (or screaming), “I hate school!” I get that. I felt that way when I was their age. School is rude. It intrudes into summer fun and ruins everything exciting. And, worst of all, it’s BORING (the new cardinal offense)!
I do understand kids’ angst and I agree that sitting in a regimented classroom with a teacher droning on and on about something I couldn’t care less about (no disrespect meant to teachers) is a cruel punishment. So, in one sense, I’m there grumbling right along with them. But in another sense, I’m eagerly anticipating school.
In fact, I think we’re going to spend eternity there.
Here’s what I mean: I think part of what we’ll be doing on the New Earth in our resurrected bodies is learning…and we’ll be doing that forever. Is that your expectation? Most believers think we’ll spend eternity worshiping God (and we will), but rather than thinking of eternity like one long worship service, why not think of it as an endless time of discovery and understanding? For instance, can you picture yourself saying to your friends, “I heard that Tolkien is offering a class on imagination up in the New Jerusalem…Wanna go?” And unlike other classes, you’ll not only be welcomed there, you’ll also have the necessary brain power to understand. After all, even if you don’t understand right away, you’ll have zillions of years to work through it. And then, when you finally do get it, think of what praises will fill your heart and mouth!
Some of the deepest joys I’ve known I’ve found in learning and heaven is filled with joy.
Think of what it will be like to talk with women and men who have deep insights. Imagine chatting with Dorothy Sayers or Mary Magdalene or Perpetua. Envision what it will be like to explore this planet in it’s reborn state, to swim or hike or look intensely at a leaf and actually see how it grows–to watch it turn light into life. Now…that’ll be anything but boring. It will be pure, unadulterated joy.
Have you ever thought about eternity in that way? Does it change your level of desire to be there? It does me.
So now…when our kids gripe about having to go to school you can agree. But you can also tell them that this kind of learning isn’t all there will ever be. This kind of learning is part of a fallen system in a fallen world where things that were meant to be joyful have taken on the shroud of death. But a new day is coming.
Read more about my perspective on eternity. “Home: How Heaven and the New Earth Satisfy Your Deepest Longings.”
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