People will come from east and west and north and south, and will take their places at the feast in the kingdom of God.
Do you remember the name of Michael Jackson’s estate? He called it, “Neverland,” after the fictional island in “Peter Pan: It included a lavish home with a huge theater, gardens, fountains, a four-acre pool, and a private amusement park and zoo.
But did it make him happy? A lot of people who knew him described him as troubled. Michael’s dream estate never gave him true peace and contentment. Sadly, the name “Neverland” was fitting.
“Neverland” is a fitting name for the world we live in. It never seems to give us the peace and contentment we are looking for. Things might be going great, and then a pandemic turns our lives upside down. But even before the coronavirus brought upheaval and anxiety into your life, you probably had financial pressures, relationship problems, work stress, illness in your body, or sadness in your heart. Because this life is “Neverland”—never able to give us the life we long for.
But even as we are keenly aware of how this life fails us, here’s what does not fail: God’s love for you. The Bible describes God’s love as “unfailing” no less than 32 times. He loves you so much that he sent his Son to undo the mess you have made in your relationship with him and the mess that human sin has made of life. He sent his Son into our world to suffer on a cross for our sins as if HE was the one who had messed things up. Through that sacrifice, you are forgiven.
Now there is nothing to keep you from going to heaven, a very different kind of “Neverland.” In heaven, there will NEVER be any sin. There will NEVER be any suffering. There will NEVER be any disappointment. There will NEVER be any death.
So, expect this world to be “Neverland” when it comes to being what you long for it to be. But be content and at peace anyway. Because God’s love in Jesus Christ will never fail you. In that love, God will keep forgiving you and giving you what you need until that day when he brings you to perfectly restored life in the “Foreverland” of heaven.
Lord, I know that this life will never be the perfect paradise you intended. But I thank you that, through Jesus, you promise me a perfect paradise in the life to come. Amen.