Reading: “Knowing that whilst we are at home in the body, we are absent from the Lord: … we are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord”—2 Corinthians 5:6-8

Christian, is this the way you think? Could you say this of yourself as Paul did? Pause, while you are at home in the body, how dark and dim, how few and short, are all the glimpses you have of Jesus? From the corruption of the flesh, the claims of the body, the concerns of the world, and the numberless, nameless obstructions which surround you, how little do you know of Jesus! Would you desire to live at this distance for ever? Think what the first view of Jesus will be, when you are once absent from the body and present with the Lord!

What holy transports will break in on the soul, when all the lines of love meet in one centre, to manifest the Lord Jesus in his redeeming fullness! If a single hour’s enjoyment of Jesus here below, through His word or ordinances, is so precious, what must a whole eternity be, in the full, uninterrupted vision of God and the Lamb! If, through the influences of the blessed Spirit, the tear of joy, and love, and praise will fall in the contemplation of His person and work; surely all the flood-gates of the soul will open, when I see Him as He is and come to dwell with Him forever. Oh! for grace, then, to long for that blessed hour, when, absent from the body, I shall be present with the Lord”—when I shall behold His face in righteousness, and shall be satisfied when I awake with His likeness. 

Taken from The Poor Man’s Evening and Morning Portions by Rev. Robert Hawker, Works, Vol. 8; 1830. Edited by Aaron Dunlop for thinkgospel.com ©2013.