“Is this like heaven?”
Shannon and I took our five year old son, Kameron, to Disney World last week. He was so excited and had such a great time. At one point he looked up at his mother and asked, “Is this like heaven?” We laughed and moved on but I thought about his question for the rest of the day.
It could be nearly blasphemous to compare heaven to a place like Disney for surely there is no place on earth that will ever compare to heaven but in some ways I thought Disney might be sort of heaven-like.
Disney is very diverse. When I heard someone speaking English I perked up, it was usually one of my own family. A man spoke to me in English at the Port Orleans Resort but he was from Britain. Won’t heaven be diverse? There will be peoples there from every country. There will be representatives from every culture and every language. The gospel message of salvation is for all peoples of the earth and there will be those from every culture who accept Christ and gain entrance into heaven.
Disney is a fantasy. Disney is about experiencing thrills and stepping into a world that will allow you to escape the harsh realities of your personal life. It is about making dreams come true. Heaven is not real to us yet, it is but a fantasy. But on the day we arrive we will finally escape the evil that oppresses us in this world. We will experience thrills and what we can now only fantasize about will become a joyful reality in that day.
Disney is a happy place. All the residents (characters) always have smiles on their faces. They live in a world of joy. They live their lives to entertain and bring joy to others. I know that it is all a façade and the smile on Snow White’s face might possibly be just a cover to hide some hidden pain in her heart but the joy in heaven will be genuine. There will be no pretense, every smile witnessed there will be a genuine reflection of what lies deep within the heart.
Disney couldn’t be Disney without the main character. What my son loved most about Disney was the characters. They were very real to him. What we will love most about heaven is the Main Character. Heaven couldn’t exist without Jesus Christ. We will know him then as we could never have known him here. It will be very fulfilling to arrive in heaven and meet the characters. Christ will welcome us at the gate and then there will be such a procession of great saints of God. What a privilege it will be to pose with Moses, Abraham, Peter and Paul.
Disney only admits certain ones. You must have a ticket to enter the gate. It is not at all important when you enter, some enter early in the morning, some late in the evening but no one enters free. A price must be paid. Kameron didn’t have to pay anything to enter, his ticket was bought by someone who loved him more than he will ever realize. No one goes to heaven free. A ticket must be bought and for those who will one day enter, they will be eternally grateful to Jesus Christ for purchasing for them a salvation that permits entry into an eternity of joy and bliss.
Kameron was right, it’s a lot like heaven.