Helping Others Get to Heaven
A life well lived can assist our loved ones, our neighbors, our friends in the journey to the pearly gates
“We’re all just walking each other to heaven!” – Mary Smith
If that is all we do — that is a life well lived. So how do we accompany one another along life’s winding roads to the pearly gates?
This beautiful Benedictine-inspired piece called “Each Day” from the book “Always We Begin Again” by John MCQuiston II is a great place to start:
“Two are better than one: They get a good wage for their toil. If the one falls, the other will help the fallen one. But woe to the solitary person!”
“At the beginning of each day, after we open our eyes to receive the light of that day, as we listen to the voices and sounds that surround us, we must resolve to treat each hour as the rarest of gifts. [We must] be grateful for the consciousness that allows us to experience it, recalling in thanks that our awareness is a present from we know not where, or how, or why.”
The passage continues: “When we rise from sleep, let us rise for the joy of the true work that we will be about this day, and considerately cheer one another on. Life will always provide matters for concern. Each day, however, brings with it reasons for joy. Every day carries the potential to bring the experience of heaven; have the courage to expect good from it. Be gentle with this life, and use the light of life to fully live in your time.”
My prayer is that no matter what “concerns” you or those you are accompanying along the road you may encounter, that in and through them you will have an “experience of heaven” and be able to cheer one another on to the end.
My dear sister-in-law, Cecelia, had Down’s syndrome and lived with us off and on up until she passed away a few short years ago. There is no one I know who faced more of life’s challenges and struggles, and yet did it with greater joy and cheerfulness than she. She was always kind, encouraging, hard working, expecting the best from life — and truly the gentlest of souls. I learned so much from her as we walked hand in hand through the journey of life.
Who has God placed in your life to walk alongside? Perhaps ask God how He would like to “configure” you by their presence in your life so that you may be able to “fully live in your time.”
“Two are better than one: They get a good wage for their toil. If the one falls, the other will help the fallen one. But woe to the solitary person! If that one should fall, there is no other to help. So also, if two sleep together, they keep each other warm. How can one alone keep warm? Where one alone may be overcome, two together can resist. A three-ply cord is not easily broken.” (Ecclesiastes 4:9-12)
Thank You for the gift of each new day! I confess, I take the days for granted. Each and every minute I am able to live is because You will it. Thank You.
I thank You also for the challenges and joys each day brings and the opportunities to expect good from them as well. Lord, help me to be positive, to see with new eyes even the everyday, and to notice the things and people that may have gone unnoticed as I hurry along. Thank You for allowing people to accompany me on this journey, and may I be of great encouragement to them and allow them to be to me as well.
Please give me the grace to be cheerful, kind, patient and loving. Lord, help us to be like You as we walk one another all the way to heaven.
I ask this in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. Amen.
Melissa Overmyer is founder of Something Greater Ministries in Washington, D.C., and has been teaching the Bible for over 30 years.