“Let us rejoice and be glad and give the glory to Him [Jesus], for the marriage of the Lamb has come and His bride has made herself ready.” It was given to her to clothe herself in fine linen, bright and clean; for the fine linen is the righteous acts of the saints. Revelation 19:7-8

A Jewish young bride-to-be prepared her body, her clothes and possessions, and her mind to be pleasing to her groom for the time when her groom would come to take her as his bride, a time unknown to the bride or the groom, a time when the groom’s father decided the groom had prepared a suitable space for the bride. The groom also prepared himself and their new dwelling place, usually an addition to the father’s home.

Usually in the night a year or so after betrothal, the trumpet blew, the rejoicing began, and the grooms and friends paraded to the bride’s home to take her to his father’s home where the marriage was celebrated.

A year’s anticipation and preparation.

Trip from home

For Keith and me, a two-week trip abroad takes months of planning, preparation, and enthusiastic anticipation. Our preparation includes:

  1. Intensify our workouts to prepare our bodies for the cobblestones, stairs, and climbs that we will encounter.
  2. Learn about the food and precautions that I need to take as a celiac (gluten-free) to keep me healthy.
  3. Research the countries and learn the customs and a few words of the languages of the countries we’ll be visiting.
  4. Plan our itineraries down to the timeframes and places.
  5. Understand the weather.
  6. Pack our bags.
  7. Discuss past experiences.
  8. Anticipate the day of departure.

Move from earth

As Christians, we have a much more significant trip ahead of us, a permanent move, a move from earth into a new heaven and a new earth, a move escorted by none other than the Creator of the Universe, our Messiah, Savior, Jesus.

What if we prepared for this move as intensely as we prepare for a short trip? It might look like:

  1. Intensify the care we give our bodies as the temple of the Holy Spirit.
  2. Consume the Word of God as we learn about God’s nature.
  3. Research the customs and understandings of Biblical times.
  4. Pray for wisdom in preparation.
  5. Understand the path we are to take on earth.
  6. Pack our bags with what matters for eternity.
  7. Discuss God’s work in our lives and the lives of others.
  8. Anticipate that glorious day when Jesus will come for His bride, the church.

Are you ready?

My prayer

Jesus, our Bridegroom, teach us how to prepare for Your coming for Your bride. Fill us with wisdom as we eagerly anticipate Your return. Lord Jesus, come quickly.

8 thoughts on “8 steps for our move into eternity

  1. Great analogies here! Never thought about it in the way of preparing for a trip, but I love it! I was also interested in the part of preparing in view of being Celiac. I haven’t had exams yet, but fear that I too have developed it. So far, I’ve been trying a gluten-free diet. When I stick to that I’m fine. Go off it and the problems start. Will be reading more about gluten-free here and elsewhere! Being celiac here in Italy is not the easiest of things!! But we’ve started eating Barilla rice pasta, and we like it! P.S. I’m glad we won’t have dietary problems when we take our trip to heaven!!

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    1. Hi Sheila, Glad you liked the post, but not so glad that you’re having Celiac symptoms. Not a fun condition to have. Honestly, I’ve found it harder in the States than in Italy (metropolitan cities) to be a Celiac and eat in a ristorante. I identify myself as a “Celiaca” and I usually have no problem. They take good care of me, and there are usually one or two things I can have. BUT, I take gluten-free protein bars from the States with me on my trips. You should really be tested, a simple blood test can confirm it, but they might want to do a colonoscopy as well. It’s worth it. There is gluten-free pasta, but it tastes rubbery. Since the diagnosis, I have discovered quinoa, a complete protein grain. It is delicious! My diet has transformed and I eat very little processed food and more vegetables and fruit. Of course, I feel much better than when I was not on a gluten-free diet. Please get checked for celiac. Food preparation takes more time, but it’s healthier, and your tastebuds will change. May the Lord richly bless you as you take a different culinary path. Please let me know if you have any questions.

      Ciao!
      Karen

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      1. Thanks for the encouragement! I plan to have the test, but we’re in the middle of construction right now. I already know quinoa, which we like and eat some. I agree that some gluten-free pasta is rubbery. But we have found the Barilla rice pasta delicious. We can also get other brands here which are good. But then, I think maybe they’re a little better at doing pasta here, huh? We already eat a lot of fruits & vegies. The Italian diet has a lot of them. Our problem is that we eat more in people’s homes than restaurants, and most people make regular pasta. I’ve decided to just start traveling with my own. I’ll ask for a pan and cook mine separately. And as for changed taste buds–I think ours already are. We don’t do a lot of processed foods over here! Good thing we like rice, corn, and quinoa!! Thanks again!

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        1. Hi Sheila, I’m here in Roma if you would like to meet. I have not found Barilla rice pasta in California, but it sounds hopeful. What I do when I go to other friends’ homes, I tell them I’m a Celiac and let them know I get sick if I eat gluten, so I have a gluten-free protein bar that I take with me. But I tell them prior to going to their home, so they will know. They understand and try to accommodate. But if they make a mistake, I don’t hesitate to pull out the protein bar or just eat the veggies. Hope to meet you. I’m in a hotel near the Termini Station. Let me know if you want to meet. May the Lord richly bless you and your ministry. Karen

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          1. Oh Karen, I would SO love to meet you! But I’m afraid I can’t make it to Roma right now. They’re starting to re-do our bathroom today. Which means we’re moving into our daughter’s house (next door) for a couple of weeks. [My daughter now lives in the north.]

            But if you could make it to Abruzzo, we’d love it. Usually I would say “Come on over and we’ll put you in ‘guest house’, but we’ll be using it (and it’s tiny). But we do have some nice agriturismi in our town. Or, if you’d like to contact me in advance next time, maybe we can manage to get together somehow. It would be so wonderful to meet you in person!!

            And yes, I usually just tell folks I can’t eat gluten, but that rice is great. Most Italians love risotto too, and are great risotto chefs! Enjoy Roma – one of our favorite cities!

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          2. Sheila, I would love to meet you so very much. We have students for a
            “Business in the Eurozone” study abroad course. We’ve been to Vienna, Salzburg, Venice and now Rome. Would have broken away for a few hours but will plan ahead next time we’re here. What a gracious offer you made! Thank you! Do you get to Southern California? If so we’ll have to make plans to meet then. Many blessings. Karen

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          3. Karen, please do plan ahead next time. Our door is always open. Both our house and my daughter’s are fairly small, so we can’t house groups. But you and a few other people, yes! From Roma Tiburtina bus station, you can catch a bus that brings you either right to our town or a few km away! Takes about 3 hours. We’ll be waiting for you!

            I’m afraid when we (rarely) get to the USA our agenda is pretty full. Our son, his wife & 5 kids live in TX. My family in Mich. Mario’s in NYC, and our church is in Virginia. We can’t afford (both time & money) to do any other stops! But it would have been nice to come.

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