(An old post re-purposed from November 4, 2013)
“He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To him who overcomes (is victorious), I will give some of the hidden manna. I will give her a white stone with a new name written on it, known only to the one who receives it.” (Revelation 2:17, addition mine)
I’ve been reading a book written by a man who was dead for eight hours.
Of all the books I’ve read about heaven (which is not many), this book is the most detailed and visual. I confess, I haven’t decided if I like his painting in words. Some of it is a little too gaudy for me.
I read this book because a friend with cancer asked me about books on heaven, and another friend suggested this one. Though at first the author’s description didn’t allure me, the details that bother me seem to fade and I’m filled with the fullness of heaven. Mortal words cannot explain “the fullness of heaven” that I’m sensing.
This persuades me to write this encouragement. Please don’t forget:
There is another realm we cannot see.
The Bible teaches this. Dead people who come back to life speak and write of it. And Jesus promised it. Sometimes we just need to be reminded.
We get stuck in our mucky world down here and forget that there is more to our story.
The scripture above is one of my favorite promises. Its’ promised to those who overcome or “those who are victorious” (depending on your Bible translation.) The ancient Greek word does mean victorious.
Some of us may read that word victorious and immediately experience defeat. The battle in our mind is fierce. The darkness closes in often. And everything seems to be falling apart. Victory is the last thing we feel.
But I want to remind you (and myself) that there is only one requirement needed to be found victorious. It’s not building a huge ministry or accomplishing bigger than life dreams for God. It’s not even being happy and content in all circumstances at all times (though that’s a great place to be.) It’s not reaching holiness on earth.
[tweetability]Our victory is only found in Jesus–never our strength, accomplishments, or sinlessness. But His.[/tweetability]
Read this promise:
“This is love for God: to obey his commands. And his commands are not burdensome, for everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith. Who is it then that overcomes the world? Only he who believes (trusts) that Jesus is the son of God.” 1 John 5:3
If we trust Jesus, we are a overcomers– victors.
In the midst of our failing, we are overcomers.
In the middle of disease, we are overcomers.
I’m hoping we can tell each other our new names written on our white stones. I’m terrible at keeping secrets. Looking forward to hanging out with you on the other side but until then let’s keep encouraging and inspiring each other testifying of the goodness, kindness, and love of Jesus.
Penny for your thoughts: (leave a comment)
What is your favorite book about heaven? Mine is Randy Alcorns, Heaven.