Planning for Paradise

I'm so blessed. To sit with a husband who will drop anything to talk about the Lord. 

I'm blessed to live in a country where church is a freedom taken for granted, where sacrifice means giving up little, where self is the most worshiped entity worth bettering. But is that a blessing, or the absence of a fearfully wild love for God Divine?

"No self-centered person can love anybody"
Dr James Dobson

We plan for tomorrow, plan for our children, plan for retirement. Our little lives are full of planning - for what end? We want to live well to end up where? We have a short-term little black book full of plans to fill up the blink of an eye. 
Why aren't we planning for paradise?

"Be dressed ready for service and keep your lamps burning, like men waiting for their master to return from a wedding banquet, so that when he comes and knocks they can immediately open the door for him. It will be good for those servants whose master finds them watching when he comes. I tell you the truth, he will dress himself to serve, will have them recline at the table and will come and wait on them. It will be good for those servants whose master finds them ready, even if he comes in the second or third watch of the night. But understand this: If the owner of the house had known at what hour the thief was coming, he would not have let his house be broken into. You also must be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you do not expect him."
Luke 12:35-40

Do we live in such a way? In such a way where we are constantly watching, knowing any moment could be the gateway to eternity? Are we loving well, sacrificing much because much will be gained? 
The verses preceding give us direct instructions:

"Do not be afraid, little flock, for your Father has been pleased to give you the kingdom. Sell your possessions and give to the poor. Provide purses for yourselves that will not wear out, a treasure in heaven that will not be exhausted, where no thief comes near and no moth destroys. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also."
 Luke 12:32-34

We know nothing will go with us when we pass. We do not worry because we look at the 'lilies of the field' - yet we, I, worry because of the lack of materialism. Because we do not trust that much will be given to us, we do not give of ourselves to others with lack of inhibition. And who suffers because of our all consuming passion for this life? All of us do. Our children suffer, our spouses suffer, our churches suffer. We are so self consumed preparing for everything little, we are losing out on the grandiose enjoyment, fulfilling and so pleasing. Is our idol the golden grass-fed calf so that we might die a healthy death? Or are we eating well to live in longer service to Christ? We are busy preparing our homes, for whom? If we are not more thoroughly preparing the home of our heart for Jesus it is fruitless vanity.
This is so hard to swallow.

So what will we take with us to Paradise? If we're not willing to lose it all, nothing. And certainly not our notable clothes or perfectly placed home. All of these things are distractions to keep us from passionately pursuing the only things we can take with us when we go. Souls.

How then, should we plan for paradise unending from a world unfulfilling? We lay the idols at the feet of Jesus and give relentlessly. We give past what we are asked (Luke 6:29, 30). We love well. Love our Lord; respect {honor} & love our spouse (Eph. 5:33), love our children through godly instruction (Proverbs 22:6), and love the Christians and the lost fearlessly.

"t.v. preachers spitting fear, 'cuz love is just too simple." (Fiction Family)

We have made laws for ourselves that are more important than the greatest: Love God, love others. Shouldn't all else stem from that? There should be no lonely hearts sitting in church pews. No homeless people on crowded streets. No starving families in the world. Because there are enough Christians to be the hands and feet. This is how we plan for paradise eternal. We pack up as many souls as we can fit into our carry on, and then pay the extra price for more luggage. We do whatever it takes to give relentlessly, no excuses.