When you think about heaven, what gets you excited? No more tears? No more growing old? Streets of gold? Seeing Jesus?
What about being righteous? Do you ever think about being able to stand before God perfectly righteous? Do you ever think about what it will be like to experience His glory without any shame or fear, to receive His love without any barrier of sin?
When I imagine heaven, I tend to think about perfect happiness and perfect health, and I fail to think about a perfect heart. But when I get to heaven, I will not only be covered with Jesus’ righteousness, I will have His righteousness. I will be righteous. Forever!
This is a wonderful hope, a hope that should change me even now. As 1 John 3:3 says, “Everyone who has this hope in him purifies himself, just as [Jesus Christ] is pure.”
Looking forward to perfection ought to make me want to be perfect now. “Not,” as Paul said, “that I have already obtained all this, or have already been made perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me” (Philippians 3:12). Christ Jesus took hold of me to make me like Himself. I am predestined to be conformed into His likeness (Romans 8:29) — and His likeness is glorious, holy and righteous!
No more tears will be wonderful, and those streets of gold will be something to see. But the hope of being righteous — that’s reason to shout!
“And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit. … Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.” 2 Corinthians 3:18, 4:16-18 NIV