True happiness in heaven

Hello all. I was wondering what people’s opinions are about this. My wife (who is noncatholic) asked me how we can be truly happy in heaven if some of our loved ones aren’t there. What I told her was that no matter how much I would want all my loved ones there, there is no way that I want them there more than God does, that his love for them far exceeds mine. I tried to explain that his love for them is so great that he respects their decision not to be with him, and that hopefully in heaven I could love someone in a way similar to that (although never as much as God). If I have a love like that, than it would be okay that they weren’t there… I dunno. What are some ideas on this? Thanks a lot!

[quote=bobby_bambino]Hello all. I was wondering what people’s opinions are about this. My wife (who is noncatholic) asked me how we can be truly happy in heaven if some of our loved ones aren’t there. What I told her was that no matter how much I would want all my loved ones there, there is no way that I want them there more than God does, that his love for them far exceeds mine. I tried to explain that his love for them is so great that he respects their decision not to be with him, and that hopefully in heaven I could love someone in a way similar to that (although never as much as God). If I have a love like that, than it would be okay that they weren’t there… I dunno. What are some ideas on this? Thanks a lot!
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Our love in heaven will be directed toward God. Will we grieve for our family members who are not there? I think you have explained well about God’s love and the decision of each soul to choose or not choose God at the judgement. Remember the parable about the seven brothers who married the same widow?

Luke 20: 27 "There came to him some Sadducees, those who say that there is no resurrection,
[28] and they asked him a question, saying, “Teacher, Moses wrote for us that if a man’s brother dies, having a wife but no children, the man must take the wife and raise up children for his brother.
[29] Now there were seven brothers; the first took a wife, and died without children;
[30] and the second
[31] and the third took her, and likewise all seven left no children and died.
[32] Afterward the woman also died.
[33] In the resurrection, therefore, whose wife will the woman be? For the seven had her as wife.”
[34] And Jesus said to them, "The sons of this age marry and are given in marriage;
[35] but those who are accounted worthy to attain to that age and to the resurrection from the dead neither marry nor are given in marriage,
[36] for they cannot die any more, because they are equal to angels and are sons of God, being sons of the resurrection.

[quote=paramedicgirl]Our love in heaven will be directed toward God. Will we grieve for our family members who are not there? I think you have explained well about God’s love and the decision of each soul to choose or not choose God at the judgemen
[/quote]

Yes, this is an important point. The mistake many people think when they think about heaven is that they picture it as being just like earth, only better. When we are in heaven, we will have a more perfected understanding and perspective of God’s plan of salvation. If a loved one of ours doesn’t make it to heaven, it’s only because while they were on earth, they turned their back on God to such a definitive extent, that they would not be happy being in heaven with him – being in his direct presence --forever. Because of our free will, God gives us exactly what we want. While we on earth can only see externals, God alone can know ALL the circumstances of a given life – both hidden and known.

With our more perfected understanding in heaven, we will be able to see this more clearly and how it could never be any other way.

Bobby:

Check out what St. Thomas explains in the Summa regarding the beatific vision. Also check out the section on Escathological Man from the Theology of the Body by John Paul II. Both views are complementary.

in XT.

[quote=bobby_bambino]Hello all. I was wondering what people’s opinions are about this. My wife (who is noncatholic) asked me how we can be truly happy in heaven if some of our loved ones aren’t there. What I told her was that no matter how much I would want all my loved ones there, there is no way that I want them there more than God does, that his love for them far exceeds mine. I tried to explain that his love for them is so great that he respects their decision not to be with him, and that hopefully in heaven I could love someone in a way similar to that (although never as much as God). If I have a love like that, than it would be okay that they weren’t there… I dunno. What are some ideas on this? Thanks a lot!
[/quote]

This is a great question and I think in the past I answered this (for myself) in the wrong way. I bought into the standard idea that the presence of God would be so overwhelming that not having a loved one there would not matter.

But that can’t be right.

If the person is truly at that point still a loved one, then it is by definition someone you love and not having someone you love there would by definition matter.

So either your loved one will be there (if not at that point, some point later), or that person will no longed be a loved one and thus not be a missed one.

Which is the case for any particular person and any particular loved one of his, we do not know.

What we do know is that God has only good things in store for us. So it will have to be a nice surprise :slight_smile:

Since God is infinitely just, and when we are in Heaven we will see as God does, then we will understand why those in Hell are in Hell - we will see that as justice. This is a mystery, we cannot fully comprehend it, but it is true.

Also, the Bible is pretty clear that no one that is not fully pure can exist in the sight of God, so if they were in Heaven they would be in much more pain and agony than in Hell (one of the saints wrote this, I forget which one).

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