Heaven is Closer than We Think

Heaven is Closer than We Think

Heaven is under our feet as well as over our heads. – Henry David Thoreau

“How far from heaven are we?” asks Sister Mary Schmidt, OSB. “Not very. It’s here and now.”

Heaven is all around us, sometimes apparent and sometimes not.

“Corinthians tells us we see with veiled eyes,” Sr. Mary says. “So we aren’t fully able to see heaven all around us.”

We see clues, she says, in the earth’s rebirth this time of year.

“The beauty we see, especially in spring, awakens our sense of heaven. We see all that was dead come back to life. Even the weeds.”

The weeds – Jesus’ metaphor for evil – require constant vigilance in the gardens of our soul … a daily practice that is never finished.

“Karl Rahner said he relied on miracles to get him through his day,” Sr. Mary says.

“Me, too. The sun itself is a miracle. It’s God’s way of saying, I’m here. Heaven is so near to us that the people who have died are here, too. A veil covers them, maybe because we’re not ready to see them yet.”

Richard Rohr describes the thin separation this way: “We are in liminal space whenever the division between ‘right here’ and ‘over there’ is obliterated in our consciousness.”

Spring’s “clues” remind us to keep awake to the heaven that is here and now.

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