In Deception, Clarence’s father Obadiah (son of a southern sharecropper) and mother Ruby watch through Heaven’s portals, and converse with their best Friend about what they see and hear:
“Ain’t it strange what these folks think?” Obadiah Abernathy asked.
The Carpenter nodded. “They cling to youth and health with a white-knuckled grip. But they don’t take time to prepare themselves for what awaits them on the other side.”
Obadiah nodded. “The one who spends his life movin’ away from his treasures is goin’ to despair. But the one who spends his life movin’ toward his treasures is goin’ to rejoice!”
“Looking back,” Ruby said, “I wonder why I was so afraid to grow old. Every day brought me one day closer to being here with You.”
“Elyon’s Word tells us to look forward to a new heaven and a new earth, the home of righteousness,” Obadiah said. “Yet how often they seems content only to look forward to a new car. Or business deal. Or the next round of golf.” He shook his head in wonder. “Rarely do they look forward to that glorious world You promised.”
“I wish sometimes we could talk to our Clarence,” Obadiah said. “And Ollie Chandler. I could tell ‘em that when they dies they go right on a-livin’. They just moves to another place. Clarence believes it in his head, but maybe not his heart. Ollie doesn’t believe it at all.”
“Our lives here are so rich, better by far than our lives ever were there,” Ruby said.
“Yet even here we awaits resurrection mornin’,” Obadiah said, smiling broadly, looking at the Carpenter. “And the meantime’s as sweet as lickin’ the spoon of Mama’s beef stew on the stove. We long for Elyon to bring His kingdom to earth, where we gonna live again on that world You made for us.”
Excerpted from Deception by Randy Alcorn
Daily Reflection: Do you share the same faith as Obadiah and Ruby or are you like Clarence (believing in heaven only in your head, not in your heart)? How can you turn to God today to strengthen your faith in His promises?