Do you ever wonder what Jesus is like? Or heaven?
Let me tell you what that picture is.
Let me show you what you can’t see right off the bat.
This past weekend my nephew got married. He is just shy of 21 years old and he still lives at home – never moved out. My sister had been having a hard time anticipating this huge change in their home and on one hand, the loss of her son.
At the reception it came time for the Mother-Son dance so Jonas and Kelly made their way to the dance floor. Kelly teared up when she heard the song…You Are My Sunshine (cover feat. Ben Mulwana). She bowed her head into Jonas’ chest as he held her while they danced.
As we watched, Christian, her 15 year old son, got up from his table, came over and wrapped his arms around them while the three of them cried and danced.
Next, Sadie, Kelly’s 17 year old daughter, got up and joined the circle…heads bowed, soft crying and occasional quiet laughter came from the swaying huddle.
Chris, my sister’s husband, slowly got up and wrapped his arms around his family of 5 and they continued to dance together. Without looking up, Kelly gestured to Engelle, Jonas’ bride, telling her to come join the circle, and so she did.
They opened their arms and welcomed her in…this new dancing family of 6.
I cried for many reasons but one of which was to watch my sister surrounded by such love…that her children wanted to be there, hold her, and embrace together. I felt like I was witnessing true, pure love.
In that moment, I thought of how lucky my sister was that her children were crying and holding onto each other because they so loved the life she had made for them, that they didn’t want it to change.
And yes, Kelly is sad because her family dynamics are permanently changing and they loved living together as a family but that doesn’t mean she isn’t happy for Jonas and Engelle and the new beginning they are embarking on.
For the next 48 hours I have continued to struggle with being very emotional over what I witnessed and have been trying to understand it.
As I cried and wrote in my journal, I had a thought…I think that dance showed me what Jesus is like.
And maybe that’s not just what Jesus is like…
maybe that is what heaven is like.
Maybe Jesus is in heaven dancing with those already there…my Aunt Ev, my Oma, Opa, my other Opa…my Aunt Mary…maybe his arm is around Dan Doerksen’s shoulders…or Ernie Wall’s…
And when I get there, maybe Jesus will wave me over without looking up, and I will join this dancing huddle…they will open their arms and welcome me into this family…this dance of love going on.
And we will all wrap our arms around each other with Jesus at the center, surrounded by his children who love Him because the life He gave them was just so good.
Because that’s what Jesus is like.
Death is sad just like Kelly was sad…not because our loved one’s journey to heaven is sad, but because our family dynamics here are permanently changing…and we really love living together here as a family.
Maybe, somehow though, we can take comfort in imagining our loved one swaying next to Jesus…head bowed…perhaps a mixture of good tears and laughter…Jesus’ arm draped around their shoulders…
And what a beautiful moment it will be to have Jesus gesture us over to join in the dance.
And we finally get to see for ourselves what Jesus is like.
“I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband…’He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.’…He who testifies to these things says, ‘Yes, I am coming soon.’ Amen. Come, Lord Jesus.”
Revelations 21:2, 4; 22:20