The summer Elijah turned three, our family mourned the passing of both my paternal grandmother and Brad’s maternal grandfather. Elijah knew that they had both dealt with illness and poor health for quite a while, and we had been to visit them both as often as we could, so he’d become close to them.
Elijah has always been a rather mature child when it comes to spiritual things, so we didn’t hesitate to talk to him about it when his great-grandpa died. I explained to him that while we would still see Great-Grandpa’s body in the casket at the funeral, the “real” him had already gone to Heaven to be with God because Great-Grandpa had trusted in Jesus as his Savior and followed Him. We were able to say the same when his great-grandma passed.
Elijah still would have questions every so often, but the conversations we had with Elijah prior to the funerals and in the months following are what eventually led to him making the decision to give his heart to Jesus and follow Him. I know that my grandma and Brad’s grandpa rejoiced that day in Heaven.
Then this year, not long before his fifth birthday, we had another death in the family, my sister-in-law’s mother, Miss Deborah.
When we told Elijah about it, we talked about how much Miss Deborah loved Jesus and how she was ready to be with Him.
Elijah said, “I wonder what she’s doing right now in Heaven?”
I replied, “I don’t know, but I bet she’s happy.” Nodding, he agreed, “Yeah, she’s probably talking to everyone.” (Miss Deborah was a warm, sweet, welcoming woman, and I could see her talking to everyone)
Then I had a thought I knew he’d like. “Maybe she said, ‘Hi’ to Great-Grandma.”
Smiling, Elijah clearly enjoyed the idea of them meeting each other again in heaven. “Yeah! She probably already saw Great-Grandpa, and she was like, ‘Who’s that?’ because she’d never met him.”
Then he added, “When I go to Heaven, I’m going to see Noah and Elijah.” (From the Bible)
I asked, “What about God?”
“I’d probably see Him all over. He’ll probably be popping up everywhere!”
While it was a sad time, and we still miss them all, it was sweet to be reminded of the joy that awaits us with God and think about how “He’ll be popping up everywhere!” 🙂
And I heard a loud voice from heaven saying, “Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people. God Himself will be with them and be their God. And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away.”
Then He who sat on the throne said, “Behold, I make all things new.” And He said to me, “Write, for these words are true and faithful.” – Revelations 21:3-5