The story is told of a farmer who called into a radio station during a contest, and being the fifth caller, he was given an all-expense trip paid to New York City. The farmer was absolutely overwhelmed by his trip and the new experiences. A stretch limo picked him up and took him to the airport; his first flight; his first glimpse of New York City, etc.

As the bell hop carried this farmer’s luggage into the five-star hotel, he opened the door and entered a room. The bell hop noticed a look of disappointment on the farmer’s face and asked, “Sir, is something wrong? You don’t look like you’re satisfied.” The farmer said, “I shouldn’t complain because I haven’t paid for any of this, but I am a little disappointed that my room is so small and that I have to share it with two other people (there were two other people in the room also). The bell hop looked at the farmer with a puzzled look and said, “Sir, your room is 60 floors up. This is just the elevator to take us there.”

Well now, before we chuckle at this farmer, we may find that we are making the same mistake that he made. Sometimes people will question whether or not God really loves them. They wonder why pain, suffering, and sorrow are a part of their lives if God loves them.

The answer is simple. We, like the farmer, have confused our journey with our destination. Friends, God never promised Heaven on Earth, but He did promise Heaven after Earth to all who are faithful.

Next time you’re tempted, due to less-than-ideal circumstances, to question whether God loves you, remember that this life is the journey and not the destination.

Steve Higginbotham, Karns church of Christ Knoxville, TN

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