Preparing for Heaven

Building the Eternal Phase of Your Life

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Improving your spirit to be more loving means to increase your ability to deny yourself for the good of God and others and be filled with God’s own love to distribute as directed by the inner call of the Holy Spirit. This has glorious benefit for your future life in heaven.

Growing your spirit now to supernaturally love others, especially those in your Christian Inner Circle, will allow you later to contribute more to the love in heaven and blend more with God in heaven who is both spirit and love. And, the process of denying yourself for the needs of others will force you to trust God for what is best for you.

Every redeemed citizen of heaven will experience benefits in heaven in different capacities depending on how they became like Jesus in their natural, spontaneous loving of others before death. Presently, it is not natural for us to consider others before ourselves, but that is the way of God. Right now we can fight off sinful self-centeredness and grow dynamically in loving with God’s divine love.

Through the ministry of the Holy Spirit, the task is getting our spirits to recognize that God’s love in ourselves is superior to our own whole-hearted love.
All divine, powerful love comes from God. If you do not inhibit it, God’s love will settle in your spirit and guide your thoughts, feelings, and actions. When it flows out of you, you will love others with God’s love. 1 John 4:12 says, “… if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us.” I hope that is what you want – to be filled with God’s love so that the love you give to others is really His love. Then you can unleash your spirit and God’s love will overflow in loving words followed by loving actions.

These manifestations of love will usually be those of the Togethers you will learn to do as a result of this Getting Ready to Go Home to Heaven curriculum.
The Bible tells us that God’s nature is love. Therefore, the society of heaven will be pure love. I hope that you want to enter heaven prepared to contribute as much as you can to the love of heaven. In heaven you will be loving to God and everyone else. But everyone will not have let the Holy Spirit develop their spirits to love to the same extent. If you think about it, the Christians you know have different abilities to love. The teaching of the Bible to work on our salvation implies that entering heaven will not bring us all to the same level of ability to love God and others.

Right now, you have the opportunity to allow God’s love to take control of you in such strength as to defeat the unloving ways of this world. In heaven it will be so easy to love that it may not be possible to grow spiritual strength in loving like you can do now against the opposition of sin.

The more your spirit can think, feel and act for the benefit of God and others this side of death, the more you will be prepared for the very nature of life in heaven. Now you have to overcome concern for yourself to respond to the needs of others. In heaven, where you will completely trust God with your needs, you will naturally be free of concern for your own welfare.

To get ready for life in heaven with a spirit that increasingly loves requires growing your trust in God that He will take care of you. This releases you to look out for others and concentrate on loving them rather than getting caught up in worry and concern for yourself.

The love commanded in the Bible is agape love which can be defined as self-denial for another’s good. Jesus gave a new command to his disciples just before He died for all of us. He repeated this command twice just a few hours before He died for us on the cross. First He said, “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” You can read that in John 13:34,35. Soon after Jesus said, , “Whoever has my commands and obeys them, he is the one who loves me.” That’s John 14:21. Then, just a bit later he repeated the new command , “My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you.” John 15:12.

In saying, “love each other as I have loved you”, Jesus was asking those who followed Him and shared daily life together to love one another – His way. And, so we know that Jesus is likewise commanding us to love deeply those in our Christian Inner Circles, those Christians we relate with regularly and often.
Begin your journey to prepare for heaven in making your spirit more loving, by working on escaping thinking about your own welfare. As much as you can, grow in your trust in God to take care of you and focus on denying yourself for the good of those to whom you are closest. When things have gotten difficult for me, such as they are now when I am battling cancer in two areas of my body, it helps to live by a verse in the Bible found in 1 Peter 4:19 which says, “So, then, those who suffer according to God’s will should commit themselves to their faithful Creator and continue to do good.” Such trusting of God to watch out for you so that you can have your mind on loving others will enable you in heaven to try some fantastic opportunities that require high ability to trust God.

To fill yourself up more and more with God’s superior love rather than being limited to your own human love, meditate on and rejoice over God’s love for you. Be sure that you know the verse of John 3:16 which declares, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” God sent His Son to die in our place to remove the barrier that separated us from God.

Take time often to meditate on God’s love inside of you until denying yourself for the good of others is easy, spontaneous, and so joyful because it arises out of gratefulness for God’s rescuing you from a terrible eternity after death. The more we grasp the great love God has for us, the more we will open ourselves for His love to fill us and flow out of us to others.

The Apostle John tells us in 1 John 4, verses 16 and 17, “God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them. This is how love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment: In this world we are like Jesus.”

Let the Holy Spirit make your thoughts sure that God and His love lives in you. Let the Holy Spirit guide your emotions to be excited that God and His love lives in you. Then, let the Holy Spirit empower you to act like it is God’s love you are responsible for distributing to those in your life.

But, let the Bible warn you about what can keep the love of God from coming into you and flowing out of you for the good of others. 1 John 2:15 says, “Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him.”

What a privilege not to just be saved from eternal separation from God because of sin, but to actually have God’s love available to live in and through us! The command to love one another, especially with those in our Christian Inner Circles is no burden. It is a very special gift. Like being given a billion dollars to give out to thousands in financial need, we have God’s infinite love with which to bless others.

Let’s grow in our willingness to have joy in being vehicles of God’s love, not for our own reputation, but for God’s glory. Let’s be aware of what God wants for others and make those our own desires.

One last wonderful thing to add to your eternal relationship with God in heaven: to the extent that we let God’s love flow through us before death we will feel connected with God through shared ministry.

Surely you have had “together moments” with others. Sometimes it was when you thought the same things, or felt similarly. Sometimes it was when you and a friend did something good for someone. Most likely your two spirits fused, at least for a very special moment, probably longer. It brought you closer together.

It is like that with your relationship with God. Every time you let His love into your life, into your spirit’s thoughts, feelings and actions, you create a “together moment” with God. If you pass that love on to someone and realize that it is His love and not yours, and that you are doing it for His glory not your own advantage, you will have a “bonding moment” with God.

You most likely have strong connections with a friend or relative through common thinking and feeling and working as a team. Think how satisfying it is to have such connection with God, getting stronger every time you are dominated by God’s love and let God’s love entrusted to you pour out to love another person. Understand that this connection and bonding with God now will carry over into heaven when you and God will have such a deeper relationship than if you do not work on being a conduit for His love before death.

Therefore, to prepare for heaven, when you interact with someone else, consider what your loving God is thinking about that person and what His emotional response is to her or him. Then adopt His love as your own and think and feel similarly. Follow that up with asking Jesus what, if anything, He would want you to do in extending His love to that person in action.

If you do this as little as one out of ten interactions with others until death calls you home to heaven, you will experience tremendous closeness with Jesus now and later in heaven for all eternity.

Reflection & Group Tools

Deny yourself for the good of God and others, especially Christians. Remember that the love you give to others is not your own, but God’s love for you to pass on.

John 13:34-35; John 15:12, 17; 1 Cor 13; 1 Peter 1:22-23; 1 John 4:7-21

Prayer to Embrace this Together
I and those in my Christian Inner Circle will need Your help to grow our spirits to love one another biblically, especially through the Togethers. Help us to yield to the work of the Holy Spirit for all of us to give You more glory in the way we live.
Please help us all to become more like Jesus and His ability to love naturally, spontaneously, and sacrificially. Like Jesus does, help all of us to let Your love enter us and flow through us to whomever You decide needs it.
May our lives worship You more because we are loving as You are loving. Fill us with Your divine love so that it bursts out of us toward those in our Christian Inner Circles and others with whom we each come in contact.
Make us strong in Your power to defeat the devil by such love that in our spheres of life we each as well as together prevent Satan from undermining Your love in the world.
Help us all to prepare for heaven by growing more completely in our ability to love selflessly and unconditionally. We need to allow You through the Holy Spirit to stretch our ability to love in the divine way of heaven.
In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Your Spirit is most easily transformed in community. The tools below can facilitate your growth as you fellowship with those you are in close Christian relationship with.

These are some of the possible benefits in heaven we will be seeking today by opening our minds to the Holy Spirit regarding loving one another.
We will grow in our ability to contribute to the love in heaven at a higher level.

We will now and later in heaven feel more connected to God through shared ministry.

We will learn to respond to people more like does God.

Rewards in heaven, which are places of service, will require different strengths of ability to love others, so we will qualify for greater rewards and responsibilities.

We want our meeting to be safe and enjoyable. At other times and circumstances it might be appropriate for in-depth discussion, even loving confrontation. But these Matthew 18:20 Meetings are meant to listen to Jesus through the work of the Holy Spirit. Discussion is discouraged and expressed disagreement not helpful. What we each say needs to be uncensored so that the Holy Spirit can speak to one of us or all of us. This is somewhat like making a list of what all the foods we can prepare for a holiday dinner, but not deciding and letting time tell us what will be good.

Hopefully, many things we say and write down will urge us to Christlike change in our thinking, feelings and actions after we leave the meeting. We can each leave here to pray, hear specifically in our spirits from the Holy Spirit, and seek help from some of those in our Christian Inner Circle.

Sanctification Booster #1:

Let’s list the things that can keep Christians thinking of themselves more than others and make it difficult for them to put others first?

Sanctification Booster #2:

Let’s list the various thoughts that can make it difficult to trust God to take care of us, that makes denying self for others seem so inconvenient?

Sanctification Booster #3:

List the ways that we can recognize how God wants us to love those Christians in our Christian Inner Circles.​