On Sundays, I have the privilege of teaching an adult class called the Pathfinders. The name comes from Psalm 119:105 — “Thy Word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path.” It is challenging to teach intellectually keen adults!
A couple of weeks ago we studied heaven. One of the questions people often ask is: will I know my family in heaven?
One very young little girl explained to her father that when you die only your face goes to heaven, not your body. “You get a new body but keep the same face.” That’s not exactly what the Bible teaches, but by inference we can say with assurance that we will know each other in heaven.
The Bible gives examples, such as the experience of Peter, James and John had, when they clearly saw Jesus with His earthly limits removed on the mount of transfiguration, but they also saw Moses and Elijah. They had never seen those two figures from Israel’s past, yet they knew who they were.
In another story Jesus told about the rich man and the poor man, Lazarus; both men died. After they were dead, the rich man asked for Lazarus to return to the earth to warn his brothers not to come to hell, the place of eternal punishment. Obviously in the eternal state Lazarus was recognized by the rich man.
Finally, the Bible clearly teaches that we shall “know, even as we are known.” And John declares that we shall be like Him; for “we shall see Him as He is.” In Paul’s description of the resurrection (I Corinthians 15) he promises that “we shall all be changed.”
There is a clear answer to the question will we know our loved ones; it is a resounding yes! The little girl had the right idea about having a face that could be recognized after we die. But her response raises another question for me; that is, what kind of face am I showing to the world I live in now.
Do those who see me discover kind eyes and warm and welcoming smile? Or do they see a worried brow and perhaps an angry set to my mouth? If the eyes truly are the windows of the soul, what does mine look like when folks see inside me?
Think about how you are recognized by the people around you on earth. Is it the way you’d like to be seen in the eternal state?