If the suffering of this world gets us down, stop for a moment and imagine the happiness we will experience in Heaven!
At times in our lives, Heaven can seem like a distant and far-off place. We may be in the midst of a severe suffering, or depression and the thought of Heaven does not console us.
Yet, even in our difficulties, we need to meditate often on Heaven, our ultimate goal and destination.
One way to do that is to think about the happiness we will experience in the Beatific Vision of God.
Fr. Bertrand L. Conway reflects on this aspect of Heaven in A Pulpit Commentary on Catholic Teaching, explaining how “The soul possessed of the Beatific Vision is necessarily blessed with a perfect and eternal happiness.”
This means that our happiness is “unending,” and will never cease! That itself is difficult for our minds to understand. We think of happiness as those moments in our lives when we were happy, which often end so quickly.
There is an innate longing in every soul for happiness, because God has created it for Himself. Too often man seeks it where it can not be found. In seeking to build his palace of happiness, he generally lays the foundation in the riches of the world, which seem at first sight able to procure every desire of the human heart. On this foundation he erects every kind of sensual and intellectual pleasure; love, friendship, health, the pride of place, the glory of this world, the honor and respect of his fellows. Has he attained true happiness? By no means, for in one day the whirlwind of misfortune overturns his palace of pleasure and buries him in its ruins.
We cannot compare our happiness to the happiness that is to come, for it will exceed our wildest dreams.
Instead we need to think about the happiness we experience on earth, properly ordered to God, as glimpses of that true and abiding happiness.
In heaven every true desire shall find its perfect satisfaction, and every evil shall cease to exist forever more. There will be perfect rest and peace for body and soul. The poor “shall no more hunger and thirst, neither shall the sun fall on them, nor any heat” (Apoc. vii, 16). The sick and sorrowing shall be strong and happy, for “God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and death shall be no more, nor mourning, nor crying, nor sorrow shall be any more” (Apoc. xxi, 4).
Conway explains that we will never grow tire of this happiness, as it will be perfect, without blemish.
[I]n heaven no unhappiness is possible, because sin, the origin of it, is absolutely banished…No weariness is possible, because God gives us the sustaining help of His own infinite power and love. All the desires of mind and will and heart will be eternally gratified.
As Conway concludes his reflection, “Lift up your hearts to the glory and happiness that await you in the palace of the King!”
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