Tammy is on the Collide team and boy do we love her! She is the one you will find crafting, shaping and dreaming up some creative monologue or spoken word. God has gifted her with a deeply keen sense of the other realm and how to invite people in this realm into the forever one. Here she invites us tick by tick to consider the forever place as time passes us by.- Willow
I’m not a collector. Not a fan of knick knacks. Or dusting. Or dusting knick knacks. If I possess anything remotely close to a collection, it would be of watches or maybe even clocks. I have 13 watches and only two of them run. If I weren’t so forgetful I’d take them to the jeweler for batteries. Unfortunately, the batteries cost more than the watches themselves. So what’s with the watches? Practically, I simply like knowing the time. Personally, time escapes me like a thief, and I am never early for anything. But spiritually and most importantly, watches remind me of heaven. Yes, you heard correctly- heaven.
The thought of heaven has made itself a comfortable and permanent home in me; most days it makes its way into my head, but every day it lives in my heart. It makes sense if you think about it. I am a citizen of heaven. I don’t actually belong here. I am just a weary traveler making my way through this life, bent on living it out, trying to stay on the path God has prepared for me.
Sometimes that path is wide open with sunny skies ahead, but sometimes it narrow, dark and ominously winding like a skinny ledge wrapping around a high mountain. Uphill both ways. In the snow. With bare feet. You get the picture. Whatever joy or heartache I meet along the path, my companion- this thought of heaven- sojourns with me. We plod, trek, rest, run, laugh, and cry. We do our best not to gaze at the road ahead but to glance at it, quickly, just enough to stay upright. We resolve to not lock eyes on circumstances we meet. Instead, we gaze at our Father for as long as we can. When we can’t stand the brilliance and warmth of His sheer awesome-ness, we close our eyes tight and see the specks of His light dancing under our eyelids. We tuck the experience away because we will need it as a reminder to look at Him again.
This reminder is filled not only with God’s glory but with His promises. These promises are available to everyone I meet along the road. I long to rush up to them and spill the news of these promises! Sometimes I do. Sometimes I’m afraid to. Some people like it. Some don’t. How they all can’t bust out in crazy dancing and join us- me and my thought of heaven- is beyond me. Maybe they are concerned about that skinny ledge, or are enjoying those sunny skies so much that they don’t care. Either way, my passion for this information to be shared stirs deep within me.
I wish these fellow travelers would not just listen but truly hear that what God wants for all of us is a life filled-to-overflowing with Goodness itself. I wish they would take what they hear and rejoice in it and realize that “all of us” includes them. Each one. This Goodness and its overflow include Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Gentleness and Meekness. I want them to grab the news and hold on to it tightly as they plod, trek, rest, run, laugh and cry along the path to eternity.
This brings me back to my fascination with the watch. I want to give people on this road their own watch if they don’t already have one. I want them to share my friendly thought of heaven. See, every time we look at our watches we are reminded that each hour, each minute, and each second makes us that much closer to heaven if we choose to go there.
We can be giddy with the fact of heaven, and that it is indeed a reality. We can look forward to all of its mystery, waiting to rip it open like the gift it is. Tick. Rooms in a mansion prepared just for us. (A mansion!) Tick. A city so beautiful that the pavement is gold. Tick. A new body clothed in light (and hopefully one with a flat stomach). Tick. Invited and dining at a banquet in the company of the Living God (and delicious, rich food that won’t affect my new flat stomach). Tick. Living where we belong; where there are no shadows or darkness or sickness or tears. Tick. A home that surrounds us with more peace and happiness and purpose than our minds can contain. Tick. A life free of disappointment and burden of humanity. Tick. An eternity of snuggling in the arms of the One who loves us so much that He died to rescue us- the same One who waits with delight and anticipation for all the ticks on our watches to stop so He can fling open the gates of heaven and run to us with His arms open wide and welcome us home.
I continue the journey of life with my eyes on the prize of heaven and looking often at my watch. I may have 13 of them, but all I need is one that ticks…