Wednesday, December 02, 2009


I read and hear people often talk about heaven and what it would like to be in heaven and how they would like to experience heaven on earth. I’ve found these musings intriguing from a background that always left heaven for where God is and where we’ll never go as I’ve read me bible. In any case the paradise picture that they all endeavour to paint is very much one based on what our imagination can put together from current experiences and the level to which it is liberated to explore all possibilities. For some heaven is about having all your pleasures given to you and sensual overload of that which is pleasing to you. I don’t have a problem with utopian thinking indeed I reckon its only limitation is that it doesn’t quite match the vision of eternity with God. That’s the only problem.

Still, I was doing a reading onto tape for my dear friend, Ray. First one I’ve done and I really enjoyed it, I’d want to do more of those if the opportunity arose. The book was Alex Robertson’s Manifesto for a Revolution: The Kingdom of God on Earth. The nature of the recording challenged me to at least retain some of the points made by the author as I summarised what was going on from tape to tape. That beat the way I usually read and also helped me to grapple with some of the issues better. Among other things mentioned in the book is how things like healings that we see in our day are actually foretastes of that great kingdom to come when Jesus’ millennial reign ends and He passes it onto His Father who wipes all tears from our eyes and removes sickness, suffering, pain, etc.

I like the concept of foretastes. I see them in scripture, littered in the ministry of Jesus and the apostles. They are identified in church history and for those privileged enough they even pop up in our lives. Those glimpses of the glory ahead when Dad says enough is enough to this decaying, rusty old world and ushers in a new heaven and new earth so He can be with His people and His people can eternally be in Him.

At this difficult time in my life it is often a source of great encouragement to get triggers to those foretastes that I’ve read, heard, seen and especially experienced in my brief time on the planet. Those triggers and those foretastes have not happened in the stereotypical places of church services, but often in the quite amazing places – one happened whilst shopping in Tescos, can you believe it? God even shows a glimpse of His glory in Tescos!

Like last night watching Law Abiding Citizen and the consciousness of the three major forces that opposes the disciple of Christ – Satan, the World and the Flesh (aka me). How the world’s system is so inherently corrupt that the only option is to actually subscribe to a kingdom that is not of this world and which will one day completely overwhelm all worldly kingdoms. It makes sense not to try and oppose the system or even spend too much time investing it, but to actually focus on living for the kingdom come that One before ushered into our hearts by Calvary, the empty tomb and Pentecost.

The whole point though is of foretaste and the triggers thereof, and as you know I have to slum it using the wife’s laptop, which sucks for me who cannot be doing with all this cutey-cute small keys and small keyboard business. Anyhow it’s been a while since I’ve been able to watch YouTube stuff, and I had the song Golden Lady in me head and looked for covers of it especially looking for
Frank McComb’s version, which is out of sight.

Then I came across this cover. I never heard the guy before in my life. Never heard of him, etc. I listened to the version and was suitably impressed by the quality and their own arrangement of the song which put another stamp on a beautiful song, adding another dimension of brilliance on a Wonder creation that Stevie must be really chuffed about. Then after listening to the song I took the time to watch the video itself and saw musical harmony interspersed with genuine enjoyment of the musically act and the unity involved in both and the mutual submission of sax to vocalist and vice-versa before trying a riff together.

That gave me a foretaste of a time without bickering, division, antagonism, but mutual submission, harmony in praise of our glorious Father and peoples of all ethnicities gathered round to sing those songs in a way that reminds me of this musical effort. One day. One day. And until then God grants me the privilege of being a member of the Body of Christ and in the small ways and relationships with brothers and sisters of Christ I get to play a part in reflecting that quality to a world watching on to see what the alternative looks like.

Foretastes – I love them. I would love to experience more and get others too share in it as well. This is not all there is to life, but there is something that we get glorious glimpses of now even now whilst we wait and work until the Master comes. Even so, come Lord Jesus.

For His Name’s Sake

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