Happily Ever After

I was a dreamer as a child. I had a spectacular imagination and imaginative friends to share it with. I was somewhat shy, fearful and maybe a little anxious. My imagination provided a buffer from these uncomfortable negative emotions and less than helpful traits. 
I loved fairy tales. Honestly, I still do. They fed my imagination. I appreciated the ordinary, kind commoner becoming the hero or heroine. I reveled in the undoing of a villain. I enjoyed that boundaries could be pushed with the ideas of fairy dust, magic and powerful benefactors (usually Fairy Godmothers) who rose to aid the crushed and oppressed.
From my earliest exposure to fairy tales, “happily ever after” was a concept that rooted firmly in my imagination and soul.

My daughter and I went to see the new Cinderella movie this week. It is wonderful! We ached at the pain and injustice. Wondered how much cruelty she could endure. We rallied with her courage. We felt respect for the integrity and kindness she maintained towards those who were harmful. 
Disney sure knows how to take viewers through the spectrum of emotion! 
All the while our hearts longed for the moment when all would be made right. We longed for justice to be accomplished. We waited anxiously for the moment when the oppressed would overcome their oppressor. 
It was a delightful movie!
Cinderella gets her happily ever after. The evil step mother and step sisters get their just desserts. The audience leaves with the feeling that all is right with the world, nothing bad will happen to them ever again. Cinderella and her Prince are forever protected from all that is ugly and wrong with the world.  After all, that is what happily ever after is.  No more trouble. The audience breaths a collective sigh of satisfaction. Then we head out to our individual realities.
Happily ever after resonates deeply. We wish for it. Dream of it. We long for it!!
I walked away marveling at the deep sense of satisfaction I get from that aspect of a fairy tale. Happily ever after. I just love it!!!
I leave the world of imagination and go back to my life. It is loaded with the people I adore. It is full of good things. Very good things. But it is also full of struggle, sickness, pain and sorrow. Life is hard. My Mom tried so hard to prepare me for it. She tried to warn me. I resisted. I stubbornly stayed in my dream world. But as usual, my Mom knew more than me. Life is hard.  That reality hit this dreamers heart like a ton of bricks. 
I thinks the reason I, my daughter and many others love “happily ever after” is because our heart were made for it.
Revelation 21:3- 5  
And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Look! God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and he will dwell with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God.  ‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” He who was seated on the throne said, “I am making everything new!” Then he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.”
Does your soul rally?  Do you feel your skin tingle? Does your heart physically ache for it? Happily ever after is real!! 
My heart longs for it! My soul resonates with it because at my core, I know I was made for it!  It is written into our very being. There is more and we know it!  When I read the words that my mighty, powerful God will live among his people. I get giddy with excitement!! I will be with Him!!! Physically present! Eek!!! 
When I read the precious truth “He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain” my soul almost breaks with the longing I feel for that day! I am desperate for it!
God wants us all there. He looks forward to that time too. Only, he is much more patient than I.
2 Peter 3:9 (NET Bible) The Lord is not slow concerning his promise, as some regard slowness, but is being patient toward you, because he does not wish for any to perish but for all to come to repentance.
I am impatient. I want my happily ever after now.  
God, in contrast is patient. He is waiting for a reason. A reason that is so important to him.  He doesn’t want to miss anyone. He wants everyone to be with him. He knows we won’t all choose him. He wants us to, but he won’t make us. He wants everyone who is going to choose him to have the chance.  Happily ever after won’t happen until everyone who is supposed to enjoy it is accounted for.

We get to choose it or reject it.
John 1:10- 12 (NET) He was in the world, and the world was created by him, but the world did not recognize him. He came to what was his own, but his own people did not receive him. But to all who have received him—those who believe in his name—he has given the right to become God’s children. 
He wants us there, He will share it with those who want to be there with him.  He is not a tyrant forcing people to be in his presence when they do not want to be.  He lets us come to him. So we wait. All of creation is hanging on until the roster is full and we are all ready.
Until then, I will cling to the hope of it. I will endure what I must. The promise of eternity in the presence of my loving God is worth it. I was made for it and I long for it. In just a little while, I will get my eternity of “happily ever after”!

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