He (God) has planted eternity in the human heart.
Friend to Friend
Do you ever feel like you are not at home here on earth? That something is missing? The reason is because you’re not at home, and something is missing. C.S. Lewis said, “If I find in myself desires which nothing in the world can satisfy, the only logical explanation is that I was made for another world.”
Solomon reminds us, “He (God) has planted eternity in the human heart” (Ecclesiastes 3:11 NLT). You were made for eternity—for glory, and as long as your feet are here on this earth, you will experience a glory ache that only Heaven can fully satisfy. You will feel a certain something missing that may be hard to define.
One spring, our family hosted a ten-year-old Russian foreign exchange student named Alex. He went to school with my son, and got a taste of what the American Christian family is all about. Alex’s English was very limited and we depended on hand signals and facial expressions to get by.
On one occasion, I was trying to get him to write a letter to his parents. I pulled out the stationary, handed him a pen, and pointed to a picture of his mother and father. “Why don’t you write a letter to your parents?” I suggested. He had no idea what I was talking about.
For twenty minutes I drew pictures and tried to get him to understand what I wanted him to do. Finally, with tears in his eyes, he looked up at me and said, “What do?”
I just hugged him and put the pen and paper away.
Quite often, I feel like our little foreign exchange student. I see beauty intermingled with pain and suffering and wonder…what do? I read about ISIS and the beheading of Christians and pray…what do? I feel close to God, but not close enough and cry…what do? I see glimpses of God’s presence, but the ache never quite goes away and I look up toward Heaven and ask…what do?
Then God reminds me that I am not home yet. I am an alien and stranger in this world in which I temporarily live (1 Peter 2:11). My citizenship, your citizenship, is in Heaven and we are just passing through this wonderful, very fleeting point in time and space we call life. There will always be a tension between the physical world and our new alive born-again spirit that is made for eternity.
Another translation of Ecclesiastes 3:11 reads, “He also has planted eternity in men’s hearts and minds [a divinely implanted sense of a purpose working through the ages which nothing under the sun but God alone can satisfy],” (AMP). Not until we see Jesus face-to-face will the lingering glory ache completely subside. I can almost hear the collective “ahhhh” that is sure to come when we believers exhale our last earthly breath and inhale eternity for the first time.
For years I read 1 Corinthians 2:9 and wondered just what God had planned for me here on earth. “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him.”
My nearsightedness kept these words earthbound. Not once did I consider that God could have been speaking of all that He has planned for me in eternity. But through my study and writing of the book, A Sudden Glory, and discovering God’s balm of glimpses of His presence that brim from living in sacred union, I have come to realize that total healing will come when I go finally make it home. The door upon which I have been knocking all my life will finally swing open when I step into eternity.
So I stand in the cleft of the rock with Moses as God holds His hand over my face, and allows me to look at His back as His glory passes by. How I thank Him for moments of sudden glory that tide me over until I’m finally home.
Heavenly Father, how I long for home. Help me to remember that earth is not my home, but I am just passing through. When the world around me seems crazy and out of control, help me to remember that it is temporary. In the meantime, open my eyes to see glimpses of your glory in my everyday life. Don’t let me miss them!
In Jesus’ Name,
Now It’s Your Turn
Read Revelation chapters 21 and 22 and record what you learn about your final home in glory.
All through the book of Revelation, John used the word like. What does this tell you about our human ability or inability to describe God’s glory and heaven’s beauty?
How does Revelation 21:3 point us to the hope that is yet to come?
According to Colossians 3:4, what is the basis for that hope?
More from the Girlfriends
Do you long for something more in your relationship with God? Do you have a “glory ache”—a hunger to experience God’s presence on a daily basis? The good new is that God wants that even more than you do. Right smack dab in the spin of the laundry and the sizzle of the bacon—as you live and more and have your being in Him. This summer, take some time to “be still and know”—to hear His still small voice—to dust for His fingerprints on the pages of your everyday life. My book, A Sudden Glory: God’s Lavish Response to Your Ache for Something More will show you how. It also includes a study guide and free online Bible study videos.