I recall the scene as though it was yesterday. In fact, the situation occurred 40 years ago. I was in the oncology ward of the Toronto Hospital for Sick Children. The patient I was visiting was a terminally ill boy who was 11 years old. He and his mother lived north and east of Toronto. His mother had to work during the week so she was only able to visit on weekends. I made my visits on Wednesdays, so he saw a well-known and caring adult twice a week.
He knew he would only leave the hospital when he went to heaven. We had several conversations about heaven, and he seemed at peace concerning dying. During one of our conversations about heaven he casually asked, “Mr. Rumford are there dogs in heaven?” I knew he was missing his dog very much and I responded, “Yes, Billy there are dogs in heaven.” Billy was searching for information about heaven that would bring him comfort and confidence as he looked beyond his life in this world.
Heaven is described as being populated with animals in numerous places in the Bible. Heaven is the new garden of Eden fully restored from the curse pronounced by God (Genesis 3). All sorrow and suffering of any sort will be banished from our presence and joy unspeakable will abound.
For mature believers the cause of our most exquisite joy and celebration will be to see the One Who loved us and gave Himself for us. We will be overjoyed to listen to Him speak. We will delight to see the scars of His crucifixion, and with mournful joy we will sing of His undying love for us.
Is this your great hope my reader? Can you say that your future is as bright as the promises of God? Do you long for heaven and wish Jesus would come quickly? Or are you hesitant? Today is the day for you and me to bow before the resurrected One and confess, “My Lord and my God.”