Words from Dic(tionary)
Afterlife: (prep) 1. life after death 2. later life e.g. they spent most of their afterlife trying to forget the fire.
There is a certain presumption to the idea of heaven which often makes me uncomfortable. It’s this notorious notion that we can live a meager existence, fraught with fault, indecision and selfishness, and because God in heaven has granted us salvation, we will suddenly be translated into eternal, enlightened creatures.
I always wonder what people would think if heaven ended up just being their life–except maybe moving it to Hawaii. In other words, just a little better surroundings, but you bring your furniture.
What if heaven is not a relief of our pain, but instead, an individualized celebration of our discoveries on Earth? What if the misery we have claimed as our own is not alleviated, but instead, continued–just surrounded by hula girls and beaches?
Would the change in surroundings be enough to make us enjoy our choices better?
It’s confounding–because everything on earth works with a delicate balance of effort, patience and grace.
- Effort in the sense that I actually show up and do my best
- Patience because good things sometimes take a while
- And grace because God, in His mercy, grants it to those who are truly humble
How can there be an afterlife if there wasn’t first a life?
If we offer a meager resume to the heavenly corporation, why do we think we are up for a promotion?
Well, you can believe what you want to believe. I think there’s a four-step process to making a life which would make any kind of afterlife absolutely delectable:
- Find what you can do.
- Do it well.
- Get better
- Help somebody.
This is the life I choose–and if I were asked to continue it in another place … I would be overjoyed to do so.