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Be part of the Digging Deep podcast, Tuesday Night, November 27th at 7 p.m. CST. Call or write in, or just listen in, and let’s share the scriptures.
The Black Friday Experience
The lines were incredibly long and everybody seemed a little “on edge” about the wait. The whole place was just wall to wall people. Sometimes, people who had just camped out in the floor, were getting stepped on by those anxious to get to the much-anticipated goal. Faces looked tired, but there was still an energy–some kind of excitement about finally being in this moment in time. But just accidentally step in front of someone at the wrong moment and you might not live to tell about it. You probably think I was in one of those 9:30 p.m. lines at WalMart. Nope.
I’m talking about the lines for the bathroom at my Dad’s house where we get together as family each year on the day after Thanksgiving. This year, while everyone else was at WalMart or Best Buy trying to get an electronic device of some kind or other, we were convening in a wonderful place that probably had an even tighter ratio of square feet per person. Everyone was there from ten-year-old Job to eighty-nine-year old PieDaddy, as the beloved patriarch is called by the grandkids. Seventeen people were sleeping in the little house and twenty were there for lunch the next day.
And, when we are together, we can cover a lot of territory in a short amount of time. There was lots of cooking, a huge meal, a basketball game, a photo shoot, a trip to the Christmas tree farm to cut trees, some Black Friday shopping, a few electronic games, some ten-year old tackle football (in the house), a lot of TV football viewing, some birthday partying, some target practice, some golf cart riding, some joke-telling, some video editing for Lads to Leaders, some guitar picking, some Pinterest sharing, and a wonderful night time devotional with some really pretty singing.
There was one brand new Christian in the room as we sang those hymns. All but three of the youngest children in the bunch have now been baptized into Christ and, as we went around the room, each suggested a favorite hymn and the boys led them. Eleven-year-old Enoch’s favorite is “To Canaan’s Land I’m on My Way” and fourteen-year-old Matti likes “When We All Get to Heaven.”
Thanksgiving with family, when the family is in Christ, is a foretaste of heaven. Consider these precious things that many of you have just enjoyed as part of a physical family, that will, at least figuratively, enhance the joys of heaven.
Sitting at that feast with your Father
Being together with the family
Remembering good times
But it might be even more wonderful to think about the things that are NOT going to be at that eternal Thanksgiving feast. There will be (not necessarily in order of importance):
No fear of soon saying good-bye to the aged one.
No messes to clean up.
Nobody getting hungry.
No bad weather.
No need to sleep.
No kids fussing.
No devil trying to foul things up.
No shortage of funds for anyone.
No mice in the pantry or flies around the food.
Nobody (like me) who bosses too much.
Nobody who is late.
No rushing to fit things in.
Nothing getting broken or running down.
No fuses blown.
Nobody getting hurt.
And, maybe best of all, there will be no leaving.
And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away (Rev. 21:4).
And there shall be no night there; and they need no candle, neither light of the sun; for the Lord God giveth them light: and they shall reign for ever and ever (Rev. 22:5)
To an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you (I Peter 1:4).