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About jonbirch

animator, illustrator, character designer, graphic designer. music producer/recording musician. co-owner of PROOST. proost.co.uk
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30 Responses to 860

  1. Each day we pray ‘thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven” – no wonder most churches are boring!

  2. Dave Lucas says:

    The vision of heaven I have received (i.e. this one) does nothing to inspire me to get to heaven.
    I’m on the pursuit for a heaven that’s more rewarding than a free harp.

  3. miriworm says:

    John 14:2
    In my Father’s house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you.

  4. Graham says:

    Now if it was a guitar I wouldn’t be bored….

  5. Obviously hasn’t discovered Harp Hero yet. The new ‘angelic choir’ mode is awesome!

  6. Nick Lear says:

    Martin Luther: “If you are not allowed to laugh in heaven I don’t want to go there.”

  7. rebecca says:

    After a recent performance of the Chichester Psalms I can’t see how a harp player could possibly get bored, but let’s give this one the benefit of the doubt.

    I’ll pick up an idea which CS Lewis raised — he suggested that the reason music is often associated with heaven is not meant to be literal, but is a reference to the way in which music can take us out of ourselves (that’s the way I tried to define “sublime” to somebody who was not a native speaker of English). But music doesn’t have that effect on everybody. If something else (laughter, playing football…) takes you out of yourself, use that as a metaphor for heaven instead. And if you’re musical, but get bored on your own, then join an orchestra/choir.

  8. If its not just one big library come distillery, I’m not sure I want to go either.

  9. dadube says:

    Ahhh, well any self respecting angel is looking through the clouds at Sakhir with ear defenders on this weekend! :D

  10. Roberto says:

    if you want entertainment go to circus
    if you need forgiveness of sins walk to church

  11. Serena says:

    I remember Maggi Dawn once saying something very similar!

  12. Dubb says:

    no need to harp on about it!

  13. Forrest says:

    Is this your guardian angel? Hopefully isn’t mine.

  14. Rich says:

    I love this image…many have this perception of heaven…I’m not sure the perception of hell is anymore accurate but that’s for another day – first comment, found the site yesterday and love it!

  15. angie says:

    Michal Jackson cartoon sprang to my mind at once:)
    Bored in heaven? that’s beyond my imagination:) Love Angela

  16. Patrick O says:

    Reminds me of Mark Twain’s great short story “Captain Stormfield’s Visit to Heaven.”

  17. AnneDroid says:

    Have you been inside my head again? When I was a kid I worried a lot about exactly this!

    Btw, I am hoping if a musical instrument is on offer I might get a saxophone, and also an ear for music, possibly in exchange for one of my current ears (not sure I want three ears).

    The thing that cured my other fear of heaven being like an eternal church service was reading C.S. Lewis’s “The Last Battle”. It cured my anxiety fully and finally many years ago. If you haven’t read it, I recommend it. It’s the last in the Narnia series.

    Also, I’m rather partial to Revelation 21:3,4 “I heard a loud shout from the throne, saying, “Look, God’s home is now among his people! He will live with them, and they will be his people. God himself will be with them. He will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain. All these things are gone forever.”

    Most of all I’m looking forward to being free of doubt and sin.

  18. jonbirch says:

    yes, annedroid… i’ve read the last battle a couple of times. both times it got me, hooked me, made me feel somewhat elated and awestruck. ‘further on and further in’ i think is the phrase used, or something very similar… ‘narnia, but more so’ is something else i remember. one man’s vision or attempt to communicate a new or renewed creation, with all it’s restored life and fullness. beautiful… and so much more biblical and better than the greek heavens and hades type images that so much of christendom seems to have bought in to.
    of course, belief in a renewed creation means good stewardship and unfolding of the world in our care, and a good understanding and biblical framework i believe will shape in a very positive way the way christians respond to their environment (including their neighbour). i could go on and on re. this subject as i believe it is a massive part of the biblical story which goes untold. so many seem far happier with a simplistic heaven for the good and hell for the bad type view, which seems utterly unbiblical to me. they would also see our stewardship of creation as utterly secondary to the truth of jesus, without integrating the genesis cultural mandate to look after the creation into their faith at all. like somehow destroying rainforest isn’t an un-neighbourly act.
    i could go on unendingly, but i’ll stop. :-)
    btw… no, i’ve not been reading your thoughts or been in your head, but i knew i couldn’t be the only one, who as a child, thought or worried about this. i can only say that i’m glad the biblical text is more sensible than the daft ideas put in my head. :-)

  19. jonbirch says:

    parick o… must read some twain. i confess i haven’t. note to self. :-)

  20. jonbirch says:

    forrest. haha! i hope he’s neither mine nor yours! :-)

  21. jonbirch says:

    dadube @ 9… woohoo! bring it on! come on mclaren! :-)

  22. Lu says:

    mmmhmmm:)

    *spoiler alert* for people who have been inspired to read the last battle… i couldn’t resist writing this in, almost from the end of the book…

    “The dream is ended: this is the morning.”

    And as He spoke He longer looked to them like a lion; but the things that began to happen after that were so great and beautiful that I cannot write them.
    And for us this is the end of all the stories, and we can most truly say that they all lived happily ever after. But for them it was only the beginning of the real story.
    All their life in this world and all their adventures in Narnia had only been the cover and the title page: now at last they were beginning Chapter One of the Great Story which no one on earth has read:
    which goes on forever: in which every chapter is better than the one before.

    ====

  23. Carole says:

    Hahaha! I remember telling my youngest daughter that Heaven would be just like church on Sunday…but would last for all eternity, the evil mother that I am. It was worth it just to see her response. I’m not sure how it will influence her faith journey in the long term!

    I have often wondered about the concept of Heaven. What is it? A place? A state of mind? If I had a choice, it would be to relive all my best bits, like leafing through a living photo album. But would that be my solitary experience or would it be genuinely shared with my loved ones? Would I get bored with that? Where does God actually fit in with my personal concept? My heavenly itinerary seems to be largely concerned with meeting once more with my dead loved ones. So, is God just wallpaper for me in my Heaven? That’s a bit worrying. Will Heaven have all those things we have loved about human life like relationships, music, art, fun, etc? Or will it consist of existing, joined with a nebulous lump of peace that is the rest of humanity? Will a switch be flicked to turn off the questioning? Can it be? Please…?

  24. Caroline TOO says:

    I tend to think of heaven as

    having all eternity to explore infinity…

    but then I am a university teacher!

    something new to sense, feel, see, delight in every day

    but

    all eternity to dwell, hang around with and bask in for as long as we like

    and

    wonder of wonders

    oh joy

    if I’m not thin (and I kind of think I will be), i WILL be in control of my eating, every tear will be wiped away…

    there’ll be a chance to perfect all those parts of my life that I long to do better now,

    even

    maybe

    play my guitar well?

  25. Bo says:

    Still being young, I don’t have that many dead beloved ones to look forward to meet again.

    But during the mission trips I’ve participated in, and the international conferences I’ve attended, I have met so many brilliant brothers and sisters of the Faith.
    I look forward to getting to know them better at the new earth, and to talk to all the other wonderful people I never got the chance to meet.

  26. Pat says:

    Ah Carole…it’s the questions that add the zest ffor me though! Not sure I’d like a question-free existence :-)

  27. jonbirch says:

    depends what the questions are. i have an enquiring (or is that ‘inquiring’?) mind, but there are many questions that i could really do without.

  28. jonbirch says:

    bo, enjoy life… there’s plenty of time for death. :-)

  29. Pat says:

    jon@27 – possibly depends on whether or not you’d class yourself as a fan of David Hume :lol:

    I agree that some questions are ones we could do without, but I think a state of all-knowingness would be too static really for anything creative – no tension, no anticipation, nowhere to leap, nothing to wrestle with, no space for the true response of love…….

    Which is maybe why I believe that in some senses, God doesn’t know everything, and couldn’t have known everything about how the material world would unfold before it came into being…..

  30. rebecca says:

    I’ve been thinking over the weekend about being bored, and I was reminded of a poem written for a Christmas service a few years ago, so (rather cheekily) I’m going to quote it. It’s by Andrew Sillis, who has occasionally posted on this blog. The message I take is that if you pray that God will make your life less boring, you need to be prepared to face the consequences.

    The Shepherd’s Prayer
    by Andrew Sillis

    Oh God this is boring – sitting in the damp
    staring at these lousy sheep
    I think I’m getting cramp.
    Oh could there be another way?
    Could life be full and fun?
    Could there be riches beyond the heavens
    When all is said and done?

    Oh God this is boring – the sheep are going ‘baa’ – again
    like when preachers make you want to snore
    until their last ‘amen’.
    Oh could there be another way,
    where truth is light and airy?
    and get away from all those folks
    whose truth is simply lairy?

    Oh God this is boring – like riding on the tube
    all those sheepy faces staring
    kinda blank, but in a mood.
    Oh could there be another way,
    for us to share this journey,
    with loving smiles and open hearts
    life would be much less scary.

    Oh God this is boring – yet more daily grind
    satisfying the pedantry of others
    wont’ they ever open their minds.
    Oh could there be another way
    much more natural and simple
    without crossing every ‘t’
    and spotting every pimple.

    Oh God this is boring – why don’t you just come down
    with a flight of heavenly angels
    just come, and take your crown!
    Oh! OH!!

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