This is from the June Leader’s Edge Book Summary of Missio Nexus. These are the best book summaries on the web. Leader’s Edge monthly book summaries and insightful interviews connect you with today’s leading writers in the Great Commission community. You can visit their website here. Access for individuals starts at under $30. The services include:

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Accessing their services just for the book summaries is well worth the cost. Below is a sample from the October edition of Leader’s Edge Book Summary of Steve Berger’s book Between Heaven and Earth. Each book summary includes the content of the book by category of:

  • Best chapter
  • Best quotes
  • Best illustration
  • Best idea
  • Best take away
  • Recommendation

BeteweenHeaven-Earth-120

Between Heaven and Earth: Finding Hope, Courage, and Passion Through a Fresh Vision of Heaven

Author: Steve Berger

Publisher: Bethany House Publishing, 2014, 192 pages. ISBN: 978-0764211676

Also available in Kindle  format ( B00IVM2SLS).

Summary

Pastor Steve Berger, who lost his nineteen-year-old son in a car accident, helps us turn our thoughts to heaven and explore such topics as: What will heaven be like? What will we be doing there? Who will we see? How can I become more excited about heaven as my true home? Berger’s premise is that it is possible that knowing more about heaven will result in greater joy and purpose in our daily lives. Through struggling with his loss, Berger committed himself to carefully studying his son’s new, eternal home. This biblical and deeply personal study of heaven will help you have an “eternal perspective” on life – and death.

 Best chapter

Chapter 5 – A Glimpse of Heaven

“Let me say something that might sound a little outrageous to you—our best days on this earth don’t even come close to comparing to our days in heaven. When we realize this truth it should do two things for us: First, it should help us loosen our grip on our earthly life and all the things this world has to offer. Second, it should cause us to long for heaven and all that Jesus has prepared for us (John 14:2–3).” Kindle location 961

“I have a theory. I think how we see God radically affects how we see heaven. If we see God in our own self-designed box, full of laws and restrictions, then we’ll see anything He creates, heaven included, from a sterile, predictable, and boring mind-set. However, if we see God as a loving, generous Father who wants all the best for His children, then we will see heaven from an open and imaginative perspective, and that gives us hope, encouragement, and such excitement that we can’t wait to see what He has planned.” Kindle location 984

Best quotes

“It might seem as though a heart focused on heaven and hands focused on the harvest can’t coexist. It might seem like an either/or option, but we’re called to live in this holy tension.” Kindle location 279

“Sarah and I could not have navigated the tough waters without the faith and trust in God that’s rooted in a heavenly perspective. There isn’t a day that passes where we don’t think about our son, and—make no mistake—some days are incredibly trying. Yet ultimately, we rest in our God’s comfort, peace, and love.” Kindle location 311

“This is a picture of the hard-pressed lifestyle. Paul’s heart was in heaven and his hand was in the harvest because of what had been revealed to him from heaven at his conversion and what had been revealed about heaven when he was caught up there. He saw God’s presence in radical ways.” Kindle location 379

“Clearly, we have to let the Holy Spirit teach us about what God has prepared for us in heaven. Beloved, that’s only going to happen when we get our minds off the things of this earth and set them on the things above, where Christ is, at the right hand of God. What have you set your mind on? What have you given your heart to? What’s important to you?” Kindle location 397

“Being saved isn’t just having the hope of heaven; that’s the very beginning point. It’s how we live after we’re saved—how productive and fruitful we are in loving and serving others—that matters and determines our reward from Jesus. How we live every day, whether we realize it or not, sows seeds into eternity. We’re either sowing worthwhile seeds that produce fruit, or we’re sowing worthless seeds that have no eternal value.” Kindle location 463

“Ecclesiastes 3:11 says that God ‘has put eternity in [our] hearts.’ Everything we long for and appreciate that is godly, loving, true, right, peaceful, secure, beautiful, and eternal all goes back to the Garden of Eden and God’s intention for humankind—to live forever in a state of beautiful heavenly joy.” Kindle location 609

“Every person, whether they’re a Christian or not, has the spiritual DNA of Adam and Eve. It doesn’t matter how foul or sinful a person is. It doesn’t matter how much they want to deny it and rebel against it; even if they try to suppress the feeling, it’s still deeply imbedded within them. There is an understanding, a knowing, that there must be more than life on earth.” Kindle location 611

“God wants us to see our lives through the lens of being strangers, sojourners, pilgrims, and foreigners on this earth. Simultaneously, He wants us to know that we are not strangers, pilgrims, and foreigners in the household of God. There, we are fellow citizens. That is where we belong.” Kindle location 746

“He’s pointing out that when we talk about God and the things of God, our finite minds can’t have thoughts that are greater than God really is. What awaits us in heaven is actually beyond description. There’s no danger that we will think too grand a thought about eternity.” Kindle location 832

“One of the greatest heaven quotes I’ve ever read is this: ‘Heaven is the compensation for lost earthly privileges.’ The authors were showing that the ultimate hope of martyrs and persecuted people was heaven, but I think it can speak more broadly to anyone who has suffered and is hurting. Heaven is a place for those who weep today on earth to regain the joy that has been stolen from them.” Kindle location 1119

“People in heaven get everything that God is—forever. He will reward them based on what they did for Him here and now. If you’re not willing to serve and help people here, don’t expect much responsibility there.” Kindle location 1170

“Heaven is where our bodies will be redeemed. It is where everything is restored. When our hearts are firmly rooted in heaven, we can, with God’s help, move through the pain and groaning because our perspectives are right. Our hearts can ache and our circumstances might not change, but we can have tremendous hope that in heaven we’ll be redeemed and restored completely.” Kindle location 1237

“Do you feel like your world is crumbling? Listen, I’m telling you from personal experience: When we look at things the way He has instructed us to look at things, through His heavenly lens, we will have hope and the healing process will begin. We will continue to wake up. We will continue to breathe. We will continue to put one foot in front of the next. We’re not going to let up or slow down.” Kindle location 1331

“Once we fully grasp all that heaven is and all that a heavenly focus gives us, we change. Our lives, attitudes, and priorities change the more our perspective changes from this world to the glory and majesty of heaven. Like Paul, we long to be with Jesus, but we also know we have a purpose for dwelling on earth.” Kindle location 1397

“We exist to fulfill God’s mission. What is His mission? It’s winning the lost, discipling the found, and sending the willing. God has called every one of us to live a lifestyle that is aligned perfectly with His mission.” Kindle location 1414

“Truly having our hands in the harvest isn’t about if we will serve. It is about where we will serve. When we renew our heavenly perspective, repent, and ask God to forgive us, we can be part of the solution and not part of the shortage of laborers.” Kindle location 1556

“In John 17:18 Jesus prayed to the Father. He said, ‘As You sent Me into the world, I also have sent them into the world.’ He sent out His disciples the same way the Father sent Him—anointed by the Spirit of God. How does the Son send out His church? The same way—anointed by the Spirit of God.” Kindle location 1813

“There’s an interesting paradox in Paul’s life. The more he focused on Jesus and heaven, the more he was torn to stay here and be involved in the harvest. The more he knew the Person of Jesus Christ, the more he wanted to tell people about Him.” Kindle location 1970

 Best idea

“With all of its corrupt and decaying ways, it’s not our home. Therefore, our hearts should not be captured by what the world has to offer. We should not be deceived by its ways or discouraged by its troubles. We should not let it get the best of us because we are not meant to stay here. We as believers are going to another place. We live by a different set of values than the world’s; we’re not of this world.” Kindle location 642

 Best take away

“With God’s help and your heart firmly set on heaven’s home, healing, and hope, you can do it. You can live torn between heaven and earth as Paul did. You can compassionately see the harvest and you can fill the shortage of labor with your hands. You’ll discover the joy of heaven, the joy of serving others, and the joy of seeing other people receive Jesus as their Lord and Savior. A million years from now, you’ll still be glad you had your heart in heaven and your hand in the harvest.” Kindle location 2087

Recommendation

It does our soul good to periodically reflect on our eternal home. The strong biblical underpinning of this book helps guard our thoughts from unsubstantiated sensationalism found in may popular books/movies that can be found on this topic. Use this book to bring a balanced biblical perspective to the experience that will be eternal.

 

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