Life, death, and heaven


Image: Lenka Novotná, Pixabay


 

1. Life means stretching thin our eternal oneness with God, in order to be born into a unique and fragile body, here, on earth.

2. Life means longing for our original union with him, and searching everywhere, until we find him at last, waiting within our soul.

3. Life means learning to love everyone, without exception, because God dwells in us all, and loves us all very deeply.

4. Death means leaving our failing, mortal body, to reunite with him for evermore –

5. And this is Heaven.

 


References

1. I knew you before I formed you in your mother’s womb (Jeremiah 1:5; NLT).

2. I thirst for God, the living God. When can I go and stand before him? Psalm 42:2; NLT).

All night long I search for you; in the morning I earnestly seek for God (Isaiah 26:9; NLT).

The Lord must wait for you to come to him so he can show you his love and compassion (Isaiah 30:18; NLT).

You are the temple of the living God (2 Corinthians 6:16; NLT).

3. The only thing that counts is faith expressing itself through love (Galatians 5:6; NIV).

Love your neighbour as yourself (Luke 10:27; NLT).

Love the stranger (Deuteronomy 10:19; NKJV).

Show love to foreigners (Deuteronomy 10:19; NLT).

Love your enemies (Matthew 5:44; NLT).

You are the temple of the living God (2 Corinthians 6:16; NLT).

Christ is all that matters, and he lives in all of us (Colossians 3:11; NLT).

You have received the Holy Spirit, and he lives within you (1 John 2:27; NLT).

God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life (John 3:16; NLT).

4. He knows how weak we are; he remembers we are only dust. Our days on earth are like grass; like wildflowers, we bloom and die. The wind blows, and we are gone – as though we had never been here. But the love of the Lord remains forever with those who fear him (Psalm 103:14-17; NLT).

The dust returns to the ground it came from, and the spirit returns to God who gave it (Ecclesiastes 12:7; NIV).

I will live in the house of the Lord forever (Psalm 23:6; NLT).

Today you will be with me in paradise (Luke 23:43; NLT).

To sit alone

Image: Free-Photos, Pixabay

1. To sit alone
With you
Is to be one, Lord.

2. To walk with you
In darkness
Is to see.

3. To live with you
In silence
Is to pray, Lord.

4. To rest with you
In stillness
Is to be.


References

1. Before daybreak the next morning, Jesus got up and went out to an isolated place to pray (Mark 1:35; NLT).

When you pray, go away by yourself, shut the door behind you, and pray to your Father in private (Matthew 6:6; NLT).

Whoever is united with the Lord is one with him in spirit (1 Corinthians 6:17; NIV).

2. If you are walking in darkness, without a ray of light, trust in the Lord and rely on your God (Isaiah 50:10; NLT).

You, Lord, are my lamp; the Lord turns my darkness into light (2 Samuel 22:29; NLT).

To you the night shines as bright as day. Darkness and light are the same to you (Psalm 139:12; NLT).

3. Be silent before the Sovereign Lord (Zephaniah 1:7; NIV).

Before a word is on my tongue you, Lord, know it completely (Psalm 139:4; NIV).

I know everything that comes into your minds (Ezekiel 11:5; NLT).

He knows the secrets of every heart (Psalm 44:21; NLT).

4. Be still and know that I am God (Psalm 46:10; NIV).

Those who live in the shelter of the Most High will find rest in the shadow of the Almighty (Psalm 91:1; NLT).

In contemplation

Draw near to God and he will draw near to you
(James 4:8; NKJV).

1. Lord,
In contemplation,
I watch my thoughts arise;
Wrapping them in love, I lay them down,
With soft goodbyes.

2. Lord,
In contemplation,
I watch my thinking fade,
Waiting, still and silent, as your glory
Is unveiled.

3. Lord,
In contemplation,
I watch my thinking cease;
Slowly coming closer, till we meet
In joy and peace.

4. Lord,
In contemplation,
I’m drawn into your gaze;
At last, our souls unite, and I am lost
In wordless praise.


References

1. When you pray, go away by yourself, shut the door behind you, and pray to your Father in private (Matthew 6:6; NLT).

Leave all iniquity behind you (Job 11:14; NLT).

He told them to take nothing for the journey except a walking stick (Mark 6:8; NLT).

They left everything and followed Jesus (Luke 5:11; NLT).

2. Wait patiently for the Lord (Psalm 27:14; NLT).

Be still and know that I am God (Psalm 46:10; NIV).

Be silent before the Sovereign Lord (Zephaniah 1:7; NIV).

We all, who with unveiled faces contemplate the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his image (2 Colossians 3:18; NIV).

3. Draw near to God and he will draw near to you (James 4:8; NKJV).

While he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him (Luke 15:20; NIV).

4. The eyes of the Lord are on those who fear him, on those whose hope is in his unfailing love (Psalm 33:18; NIV).

Whoever is united with the Lord is one with him in spirit (1 Corinthians 6:17; NIV).

We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans (Romans 8:26; NIV).

Our soul

We have all been baptised into one body by one Spirit,
and we all share the same Spirit.
(1 Corinthians 12:13; NLT).

Lord, our soul is you within us all (1).

You make us, breathe your soul into us, and give us life (2).

You dwell in us, and we in you, though we may never recognise your presence (3).

When we die, our soul returns to you, though in truth it has never been separated from you, for you are indivisible. The whole of you dwells in every one of us, and never leaves us (4).

No matter what we might prefer to think, we are always united with one another and with you, through Christ, your Son (5).

We do not each have a separate soul, unique to ourselves. There is only one soul, which is your Holy Spirit, shared forever by us all: those not yet born, those who are alive, and those who have died (6).

In the light of our neglected, yet primordial, oneness, and given the extremely serious state of international relations, climate change, and our widespread religious, political and personal inhumanity towards one another, here is today’s prayer:

Help us to grasp our oneness, Lord,
With you,

By loving you
In all creation:

Creatures,
People,

Earth, sky,
And ourselves.

We ask this through
Your dear Son’s name.

Amen (7).

References

1. You are the temple of the living God (2 Corinthians 6:16; NLT).

2. There is a spirit within people, the breath of the Almighty within them (Job 32:8; NLT).

3. There is […] one God and Father, who is over all and in all and living through all (Ephesians 4:5-6; NLT).

In him we live and move and have our being (Acts 17:28, NIV).

The fool says in his heart, “There is no God” (Psalm 14:1; NIV).

4. The dust returns to the ground it came from, and the spirit returns to God who gave it (Ecclesiastes 12:7; NIV).

God has said, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you” (Hebrews 13:5; NIV).

The Lord is one (Mark 12:29; NIV).

5. I pray that they will all be one, just as you and I are one—as you are in me, Father, and I am in you (John 17:21; NLT).

You are all one in Christ Jesus (Galatians 3:28; NLT).

6. God is Spirit (John 4:24; NLT).

You have received the Holy Spirit, and he lives within you (1 John 2:27; NLT).

I knew you before I formed you in your mother’s womb (Jeremiah 1:5; NLT).

Those who have died will be raised to live forever. And we who are living will also be transformed […] into immortal bodies (1 Corinthians 15:52-3; NLT).

7. You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your mind, and all your strength [and] Love your neighbour as yourself. No other commandment is greater than these (Mark 12:30-31; NLT).