Jump Starts Daily

Jump Start #3606

Jump Start # 3606

John 14:3 “And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.”

NOTE: Tomorrow is a holiday. There will be no Jump Start posted.

  More thoughts from a recent trip to France.

  One of the fascinating places we saw on our trip was the Palace at Versailles. Throughout Europe there are many palaces. The famed Louvre Museum originally was a palace. It’s hard to beat the size and the beauty found at Versailles. It started off as a hunting lodge in the mid 1600s, built by Louis XIII. But it was the next generation, Louis XIV, that reshaped the palace into the exquisite, breathtaking golden palace. The hall of mirrors, 240 feet long, vaulted painted ceiling, golden statues, crystal chandeliers and more than 300 mirrors is the gem of the palace. It is beyond words.

  Later, Louis XVI and his wife, Maria Antoinette, would be on the wrong side of the French Revolution, and be arrested and later executed by the guillotine. We walked through her bedroom and I thought, if she were alive in that palace, she would never let so many strangers parade through her house, looking at all her furnishings and paintings. Likewise, we’d do the same. We don’t just let anyone walk through our house, especially our private places like our bedrooms.  

  And, that takes us to our verse today. It is a triplet of promises. Jesus says, “I go.” Then, “I will come.” And, “I will take you”. Promises. Certainties. Absolutes. This you can count on. Why? Because Jesus said so. Because God can be trusted. God keeps His promises.

  Here are some thoughts

  First, walking through the palace of Versailles made me realize that I got to see things that most people living during the times of the reigns of Louis XVI never got to see. But life is like that, especially for our times. Through the advancement of technology, inventions and research, we can now see stars that others never saw. We can see the growth of a baby in the womb that generations before never experienced. We have seen pictures sent back from the moon and the bottom of the ocean that others only wondered and dreamed about.

  But greater than all those things, we have seen prodigals returning home. We’ve seen brethren extend grace and forgiveness towards each other. We’ve seen hearts change. We’ve seen the most stingy person becoming generous, with a smile on his face. We know the Gospel works, because we have seen it. All around we have seen it but more than any other place, we have seen it in our own lives. Because of that, people who have never seen thriving marriages, now do. People who have never understood forgiveness, see it. People who have given up on kindness and peace, now see that there is still hope. All of this comes though the power of the Gospel.

  Second, a day is coming when we will see the home of God, Heaven. John was given a picture of it in Revelation. Paul was caught up to the third Heaven, but he could not repeat what he heard. This won’t be a guided tour group that lasts a few hours and then we return to our homes. Heaven will be our home. And as spectacular as Versailles is, Heaven will only be better. It has to be better, because God is there. And, as each of our homes, reflect our tastes and interests, Heaven will be a reflection of God. Pure. Right. Perfect. Holy. Glorious. That’s God. That’s Heaven, His home.

  The palaces of Europe define and illustrate the haves and the have-nots. The books will tell you that Louis XIV built the palace, but he really didn’t. Common laborers built it for him. They did the hard work. Many likely were injured or killed in the process. Safety regulations didn’t really exist back then. The have-nots kill themselves so the haves can be spoiled in luxury. Once the palace was completed, the have-nots, had to leave. They would not be invited to the banquets at the palace. They would not dance in the ballrooms. They would not dress as the people who lived in the palace did. They would not eat the fine foods that were served in the palace. No, once their labor was completed, the gates were closed and they were kept on the outside. The haves and the have-nots.

  Heaven won’t be like that. The common guy, like the Rufus, who carried the cross for Jesus would be welcomed there. The outcasts, like Zacchaeus or the thankful Samaritan leper, would be welcomed there. You and I would have a place at God’s table. Welcomed. Accepted. Invited. Wanted.

  The division of Heaven is believer and non-believer. It’s not based upon the heritage of family. It’s not about education, race, or, finances. It’s not about what we have achieved. It’s about knowing and walking with our Savior.

  What a thought, the gates of Heaven opened for the likes of you and me. A place where we do not belong, we will belong. And, that place, will become our home. It will be the longest place we ever dwell. And, as for the hall of mirrors, God will have that beat. Just wait and see…