My late father, Roy Weliever, was a Christian. He served as a Shepherd in the Lord’s church. He was a good provider. A hard worker. A godly example. And a man who loved to share God’s Word with others.
Our post today is based on one of his very favorite passages. It’s highlighted in his Bible. I’ve heard him use it for Wednesday evening talks. And I always think of him when I read it.
“Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me. In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. 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.” (Jn. 14:1-3)
This was the beginning of Jesus’ farewell message to the apostles. It was given to comfort their hearts, offer hope, and provide direction.
Six words came to my mind this morning in reading this text again.
The disciples were saddened. Their minds were perplexed. And their hearts were heavy. And the trouble they would face was only beginning. Jesus cared about their feelings. Their fears. And the problems they’d encounter. So, he offered them comfort.
Remember, whatever trouble you’re facing today, Jesus cares. He knows. He hears. He feels. And wants you to trust in His protective care. “Let not your hearts be troubled,” He says to you.
Jesus’ promises offered help and provided hope. These verses are only the beginning of how He would see them through the challenges and problems throughout their lives.
Jesus promised, “I will go…” “I will prepare…” “I will come again.” “I will receive you…”
Later the apostle Peter reminded us that we enjoy “great and precious promises” in Christ Jesus. When trouble comes your way, stop, and think about His promises. Forgiveness of sins. The privilege of prayer. The gift of the Holy Spirit. The fellowship of Believers. Purpose in life. Hope beyond the grave.
Sometimes, people promise something that they can’t provide. Not Jesus. Just as He trusted the Father to provide, we can trust our Savior. He’s preparing for us something special. Something beyond our fondest dreams. He had provided for us all things that pertain to life and godliness and has prepared something beyond anything imaginable in this life.
“I go to prepare a place,” Jesus promised. That place is heaven. It’s a real place. It’s not a state of mind. Or some utopia on earth. Or the figment of the imagination of a fundamentalist preacher. Heaven is a place beyond this life. Older versions use the word “mansion.” It may be better translated as “rooms” or “dwelling places.”
Jesus has prepared a place where we will dwell together. Not in separate mansions in a gated community. We will live in His huge, heavenly house.
We will dwell in the presence of God Himself. Jesus said, “where I am, you will be also.” What an incredible thought! To dwell with the Divine Family. To see God. To literally commune with Christ. To be in the presence of the Holy Spirit. Wow! What a day that will be.
Jesus has made the preparation. It’s all in God’s eternal plan. His promises and provisions can be counted on. And our place is secured. But, we too must make preparation.
It’s often said that “heaven is a prepared place for a prepared people.” None of us will accidentally arrive in heaven. Like any trip, we must decide where we’re going, then plan and prepare to make the journey.
The message ought to comfort our hearts, calm our souls, relieve our fears, strengthen our faith, and fortify our hope.
My Dad believed it.
I do too.
–Ken Weliever, The Preacherman