Rick Warren (September-23-2022) Daily Devotional: You Were Made to Last Forever.
“For this world is not our permanent home; we are looking forward to a home yet to come.” - Hebrews 13:14 (NLT)
Heaven is the place God is preparing for his family.
When God started thinking up Earth, he also started thinking up heaven. Why? Because he knew you were not meant to live here forever. This is not all there is!
That’s a good thing—because you don’t want to live in an imperfect place forever. You want to live in a perfect place that was made just for you, as a member of God’s family.
God’s plan for eternity is such an amazing expression of his love. The Bible tells us that God created the entire universe because he wanted a family that would live with him forever. It wasn’t because he was lonely—because God is fulfilled in himself. He wanted to express his love by creating human beings in his image, so that he could adopt us into his family, and we could live with him forever.
Ephesians 1:5 says, “[God’s] unchanging plan has always been to adopt us into his own family by sending Jesus Christ to die for us. And he did this because he wanted to!” (TLB).
There’s a word for God’s family: church. The only thing in this world that’s going to last is the church—the people who have chosen to be part of God’s family in faith and obedience.
As the Bible says, “We have a priceless inheritance—an inheritance that is kept in heaven for you, pure and undefiled, beyond the reach of change and decay” (1 Peter 1:4 NLT).
Because you were made to last forever, you can choose to spend eternity in one of two places: heaven or hell.
When you make Jesus the Lord of your life, you accept your inheritance as God’s child and your forever home in heaven. That inheritance can never be taken away from you! It is God’s amazing gift to you. It changes not just where you spend eternity but how you live life now.
The Bible says in Hebrews 13:14, “For this world is not our permanent home; we are looking forward to a home yet to come” (NLT).
Once you become part of God’s family, there’s a whole lot more to life than just the here and now. You realize that this world really is not your home. You’re just passing through!
Talk It Over
- How do you look at life differently when you understand how short it is compared to eternity and how much you have to look forward to as a follower of Jesus?
- What are some ways you have experienced God as your heavenly Father? What is it like to be his child?
- Does thinking about heaven give you an urgency to tell others about it? Why or why not?
God wants you in his family. Are you ready to come home?
God made you to love you, and one of the places you see that most clearly is on the cross. Through Jesus’ death and resurrection, God made it possible for you to become part of his family for eternity. No matter what you’ve done or where you’ve been, you’ve got a place in God’s forever family ready and waiting for you. The invitation is wide open. Just believe and receive.
Are you ready? Here’s a prayer you can start with: “Dear God, I know when I die, I’m going to give an account of my life to you. I know I have sinned against you, and I have lived by my plan, not yours. I want that to change, starting right now. I want to turn away from my sins and toward you.
“Thank you for sending Jesus to die for all that I’ve done wrong so that I don’t have to pay the penalty. I know I don’t deserve your forgiveness. I know only your grace can save me, Lord.
“Jesus, I believe in you, and I commit my life to you. I will follow you as my Lord from this day forward. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.”