Several years ago, a friend of mine was killed in a tragic accident.
Phil had just graduated from a police academy in Florida, was in the best shape of his life and was thoroughly excited about his new job. Since it didn’t pay much, he supplemented his income by working as a security guard.
One night he took a shift at a car dealership for a buddy of his. During the night two teenage boys broke into the dealership to steal some rims and shot Phil in cold blood. He was only 25 years old, was on the verge of getting engaged, and was greatly loved by his many friends for his tender heart and sweet spirit. About 4,000 people attended his funeral.
Struggling with grief in the days after Phil’s death, I asked God to help me see the bigger picture. I asked Him to give me a glimpse of heaven, a better picture of “glory.” This is what I felt Him speak to me:
What we experience of God here on earth, even in our deepest times of prayer and worship is only His thumbprint. And just like it is impossible for us to judge someone’s height, weight, hair color and eye color from just looking at their thumbprint, it is impossible for us to understand God’s “height” or His greatness while here on earth.
In heaven, Phil sees all of God now — our holy God in all His glory and majesty. As Paul said, “Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face” (I Cor. 13:12). Phil has no sorrow. The Lord meets all his needs and he is free of burden and care.
The soaring mountains, endless oceans, glorious sunsets and changing seasons — What we see of God on earth is merely His thumprint. And if that’s so, how glorious must heaven be!