Blog

The Hope of Heaven

I am so excited that Kendra Scott has partnered with Inheritance of Hope to sponsor Legacy Retreats. She sponsors Legacy Retreats to honor her friend Holley's legacy, and the reason that I am involved with Inheritance of Hope is because I am carrying on my friend Kristen's legacy. I can definitely relate to Kendra's heart in this mission, and it is such a pleasure to team up with her to honor our friends together.

 

Inheritance of Hope serves families that have a terminally ill parent and young children. With that said, there are many people that we have served that have passed away, and it has left me often wondering what heaven might be like. Of course, I don't know -- I haven't been there! But, the Bible gives us some clues and uses some words to describe it: glorious, perfect, fruitful, peace, new, paradise.

 

I imagine such an amazing place where we have the best of this life plus all these additional joys that are beyond our imagination. The verse that I love the most about heaven is found in Revelation 21:4. "There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain." We have all experienced these things. At Inheritance of Hope we know a lot about death and mourning and crying and pain. To imagine a place where those things are gone is a tremendous gift!

 

Part of my job, as the Family Legacy Director, is to send out an email to everyone who attended the Legacy Retreat when someone from that retreat passes away. It is not my favorite part of my job; however, over the years God has given me this tremendous peace and joy by praying for the family that lost their loved one and for each person receiving this email. He provides this eternal perspective. When this person that we loved that passed away knew Jesus, I imagine them meeting him face to face for the first time having a whole, perfect, healed, pain-free body. Jesus might look at them and say, "This is what I had in mind for you all along. Enjoy the best of your life. Well done."

 

I imagine my friend Kristen there with her warm and beautiful smile and Kendra's friend Holley there with her outgoing, gregarious personality welcoming this newcomer into heaven. Also so many other IoH family members that we love so much that are there to greet this new arrival. It is quite an amazing thought to think about! I can even imagine this newcomer telling Kristen and Holley all about the amazing partnership between Inheritance of Hope and Kendra Scott and all the families that are being served and impacted because of this tremendous partnership.

 

When I consider heaven and all these things, the people that I love and the perfect life and the pain-free body, sometimes I just wish I was already there. It just seems so wonderful and I yearn for that. And yet, I am here and you are here. We are here because God woke us up this morning and put breath in our lungs. He gave us the strength and the health and the ability to serve others and woke us up for a purpose. For now we get to point others to the hope of heaven. Just like our loved ones in heaven are welcoming new arrivals, we get to welcome new families to Legacy Retreats. We get to point them to the hope of heaven.

 

Whatever you do (whether you work on a computer each day, wipe kids' hands and faces, drive a bus, teach a class, serve on a Legacy Retreat, design and sell beautiful jewelry) work at it with all your heart as working for the Lord and not for humans, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Jesus Christ you are serving." -- Colossians 3:23

 

That's the opportunity we have each day. We get to honor our loved ones who are already in heaven, we get to build our own legacies, and we get to point others to the hope of heaven. 

 

Jill Thompson didn’t give much thought to intentional living until her best friend, Kristen Milligan, was diagnosed with terminal liver cancer at age 30. She had a front row seat as Kristen planned and prepared for her death and was inspired to be as intentional with each day. Kristen rarely missed a single moment to speak truth to her children and to teach, inspire, and encourage others. Because of her intentionality, her life and legacy are still greatly impacting others even 6 years after her death. Jill lives in Florida with her husband and four children and tries to make the most of each and every day, living intentionally as a wife and mom. Read more posts from Jill >>