Living Like There's a Heaven

April 20th, 2011

I'm not convinced that most Christians actually believe there is a heaven.

This thought runs counter to popular opinion. Usually I hear Atheists fault Christians, or others who believe in an afterlife, for 1) not caring enough about the poor (why would we, they'll be well-fed in heaven), 2) not caring enough about the earth/environment (why would we, it will be wiped out anyway), and 3) not living life to the fullest (why would we, heaven will give us a second chance to enjoy life).

But is it because people BELIEVE in heaven that they act in these ways, or is it because, in reality, they DON'T believe in heaven? I say this because if someone really believed there was an afterlife, a true realm of eternal existence with God/the divine, wouldn't they cast caution to the wind? Think about it. If there is a heaven, why not go wild!? Why not be wildly courageous with your decision-making? Why not be wildly generous with your time and money? Why not be wildly extravagant with your love? Why not be wildly bold with your faith?

I mean, why not? God's given us this life to live to the FULLEST - not to be a bunch of chickens waiting around for heaven. The belief in heaven doesn't come with a caution sign. Let's push our faith to the limit. Worst case scenario we end up chillin' with God later that day : )

So, answer this for me. What if...I were to live my life AS IF there actually were a heaven? What would I do differently? How would this one change in my life convince others that I really did believe in an afterlife?

I look forward to your comments. Peace friends.

Jay Cooper is the pastor of Jacob's Well, a new United Methodist Church plant in Chandler, AZ. He blogs at Souls Gone Wild.

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