The death of Stephen in Acts 7 was one with huge implications for me. Just as he is about to be violently stoned to death, the Holy Spirit allows him to see Jesus standing next to God. He finds so much comfort in seeing Jesus he is able to fall asleep as he is being stoned to death
He found a peculiar peace and comfort in knowing he would soon be near Jesus. Seeing Jesus in death is only comforting if Jesus has been savior and LORD in life. Seeing Jesus in death is only comforting and something you look forward to if Jesus is your joy and dependance in life.
So a difficult question arises in my heart today.
If I could get to heaven and receive all that heaven promises (streets of gold, no more sorrow or pain, a new body and name, etc.) but Jesus would not be there, would I still want to go there?
The honest answer in death reveals the truth of Jesus' place in my life.