I once bought the extra cheap knock off brand of paper towels from the extra-cheap grocery store chain. One spill proved that was a mistake. It may have looked the same as the name brand, but it was a far cry from being the real deal.
Scripture tells us that when we awaken in glory there will be a similar sensation. The highest pleasures of this world will feel like cheap knock offs in comparison to the true heavenly realities that will greet us in that coming land.
When we open our eyes, not only will the bitterness of death be gone, but a radical, new thrill will beam through our souls. The sensations will be familiar, but their quality will be intensified and magnified a thousand times over.
For now we see through a glass, darkly...
now I know in part;
but then shall I know even as also I am known.
1 Corinthians 13:12
That's what Paul is communicating in the above mentioned verse. In 1 Corinthians 13 Paul was talking about love and the eternal world. He says we 'know' what the future world will hold, but 'only in part.' We've experienced some of those blessings in this life, but it was only a corrupted fraction of the true and full realities that will meet us in glory.
This is what seeing through a glass darkly means. The mirrors of the ancient world did not render the pristine reflections that we have today. At best, the mirror was a piece of polished brass. It would be like seeing if you were having a good hair day by looking at your reflection in the hood of your car.
Take a gander at the following list. You've enjoyed the blessing of each, right?
The truth is you haven't even begun to experience these things. Your experience was a darkened, mutated expression of the heavenly reality.
The happiest moment on this planet will be like utter sadness in heaven. The best fellowship that you've ever had is just a paltry fraction of the depth of true communion you will have there. You will find your previous friendships to only hatred by comparison.
We've seen the stars at night. They are beautiful to behold. But each of those stars is so distant. There is a sense in which we do not have a full comprehension of that star's true nature. Each of those celestial lights is comparable to (if not greater than) our Sun.
Imagine the overwhelming experience of having looked at one of those stars, then, in a blink, you were face to face with it, as if sitting on the surface of Mercury gazing at the sun.
This is what it will be like when we pass through the river of death. You will come face to face with peace. Yes, you will know what it is. You've witnessed it from afar. But it was the cheap imitation that will not compare to the heavenly endowment.
The peace that will fall upon you there will be of an exceedingly heightened nature. Not only will it be completely undefiled, but its eternal character will make all previous experiences of peace seem like the raging storms of hell.
In that moment of moments, as death's portal gives way, you will be enraptured with the "eternal weight of glory." You will know in the fullest sense of knowing the wonder of heaven.
The Autobiography of John G. Paton
"When I am parched and dry in my own soul the best cure that I know is to pick up and read a good Christian biography." -Unknown
John G. Paton dared to face the cannibals of New Hebrides in order to bring the gospel to this heathen people. This free ebook not only recounts Paton's preparation for and adventures in that faithful mission, but will serve to be a devotional read for young and old alike.