Last week we considered awe. Specifically, how:
- God created human beings with the capacity to be amazed
- God loaded the world with amazing creation
- It’s impossible for you to not live in a daily pursuit of things that will leave you amazed
- Creation, while amazing and designed to be celebrated, cannot satisfy your soul
- Looking for awe in the wrong places will leave you dissatisfied and is spiritual warfare
But I must say more. Otherwise, our discussion of awe would have a glaring and significant omission. Here’s the missing piece: our quest for awe requires a destination.
We can’t think about awe and not consider eternity. Perhaps we can find no more real and present argument for heaven than the angst that we all carry in the face of the temporary and dissatisfying awes of the present.
The words of C.S. Lewis summarize the angst as best as any:
“If I find in myself a desire which no experience in this world can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that I was made for another world.”1
On the other side, we won’t need the fingers of creation pointing us to God’s awesome glory because we will see that glory face-to-face. There and there alone will the journey end, the war be over, and our hearts be given the rest they always wanted but never fully had.
We will finally stand in the actual presence of God, and we will bask in the light and heat of his heart-satisfying awe, never to long again. It’s impossible to characterize how deep and expansive our delight in him will be.
Until then, every time you experience the disappointments of this world, remember that your craving for awe is a longing for another world. Your heart cries out each day to be surrounded by the glory of God, freed from the seductive voices of competing glories.
I give painful
evidence every day.
I experience it in
predictable and unpredictable
I guess I should know
but I am often
caught off guard.
There is an
inside of me,
a thirst that never
seems to be
This deep hunger
doesn’t go away
no matter how busy
or how hard I work to be
I long for
and none of these
ever gets fully
And so in my quest
I am faced with
that this simply is not all
that there is
and the sure truth
that I was
for another world.
Your pursuit of awe today is a quest for the heaven of tomorrow that God has guaranteed for every one of his blood-purchased children. Through his death and resurrection, Jesus has paid for and prepared that place for you.
There is no greater grace than to be invited into the presence of such glory. There is no greater gift than to have your fickle heart forgiven and finally satisfied forever and ever.
“The Spirit and the Bride say, “Come.” And let the one who hears say, “Come.” And let the one who is thirsty come; let the one who desires take the water of life without price. . . . He who testifies to these things says, “Surely I am coming soon.” Amen. Come, Lord Jesus! (Rev. 22:17, 20)
1. Have you experienced angst recently because of the temporary and dissatisfying awes of the present?
2. How do you typically respond to that angst?
3. What do your responses to that angst reveal about what is most important in your heart?
4. How can you preach the gospel to yourself amid disappointment?
5. Who do you know who is experiencing disappointment today? How can you encourage them with the theology of awe and eternity longing for eternity?
1 C. S. Lewis,, Mere Christianity (New York: Simon and Schuster, 1996), 121.