Longing for a Heavenly Country

by Melissa Moore

Do you ever have those days that you just feel sort of disillusioned by life? I mean, most of the time I feel content and satisfied with my life. After all, I have an incredible job that I absolutely love and an amazing family that I adore but every once in a while I get this nagging and empty feeling that something just isn’t quite right. I’m not talking about the kind of day when you are plagued by an argument you had with a good friend or family member or even the kind of day when you’ve dropped your car keys one too many times. I am talking about the kind of day when nothing in particular is wrong but, still, there is an overwhelming restlessness deep down in your soul. Then again, perhaps I am the only Christian who still experiences disheartening days when, in the midst of so much, I can’t figure out what is missing.

I think that this struggle may be due to the tension between living in the midst of an already but not yet kingdom. The tension of living in an already but not yet kingdom is not just theological in nature, for it plays out in everyday life experience. In one sense we already experience the realities of the kingdom of God but in another sense we still wrestle with the flawed kingdom of humankind. For example, we have been set free from the law of sin and death and so no longer have to carry the burden of guilt or the fear of everlasting punishment. Sometimes, however, the “not yet” nature of the kingdom is overwhelming. For all practical purposes we still fear physical death even though we know that we will rise with Christ on the final day to reign with him forever and ever. We still mourn, even though we now do so as those who have hope for final resurrection. We can rejoice in the liberating freedom that we have now in this life because of our forgiveness of sin and our identification with Christ. At the same time, however, we long to be rid of the sin that plagues us individually and the sin that plagues our world on an everyday basis. Though we have been fully redeemed, we have not yet experienced our redemption in full.

So I guess what I mean is that, even though I know full well that I am called to be an ambassador for Jesus Christ on this earth since the kingdom has not yet been fully consummated, every once in a while my soul is just flat restless. As I was reading Jesus’ farewell discourse to his disciples this morning (John 13-17), I couldn’t help but feel their pain. After washing his disciples’ feet, Jesus all at once tells them, “My children, I will be with you only a little longer. You will look for me, and just as I told the Jews, so I tell you now: Where I am going, you cannot come” (John 14:33). This is brutal news for the disciples who had spent countless mind-boggling and miraculous days with God himself! But Jesus, the ultimate comforter, then tells them, “Do not let your heart be troubled. Trust in God, trust also in me. In my Father’s house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you…I will come back and take you to be with me” (14:1-3). I don’t know about you, but even though I love my life and feel burdened to continue spreading the good news of the gospel, I can’t wait to see the place that Jesus has prepared for us. I can’t wait to see heaven opened with all its brilliance. And, most of all, I can’t wait for the presence of God to finally be with men; I mean, for him to actually dwell with us!

Sometimes life is just plain hard and it seems that the suffering switch has been turned on to the highest degree. Other times we are puzzled by relationships or difficult job circumstances. And, then, there are other times that something just feels a bit off deep down in our hearts. Nothing in particular has gone wrong. Maybe it is quite the opposite. Maybe everything has gone right and that haunting, restless feeling still lurks behind and mocks us! What is that about? Aren’t Christians supposed to be content in every situation? Joyful at all times? I find it interesting that the same man who urged us to be content and joyful in every situation also told us that he struggled with desiring to depart and be in the Lord’s presence. Though he found it necessary to press on and do the Lord’s work on earth, he said, “To live is Christ and to die is gain…I am torn between the two” (Philippians 1:21-26). Maybe it isn’t so bad, then, to recognize every once in a while that we are truly longing for a better country, a heavenly country, one that is being prepared for us by the nail-scarred hands of the resurrected Christ.

Let us hold fast to the promise that we will reign with King Jesus, in perfected, holy, and unblemished resurrected bodies, forever and ever in the new kingdom and let us rejoice that our names are written in heaven (Luke 10:20).

“Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord God Almighty, who was, and is, and is to come”
Revelation 4:8.

Amen. Come, Lord Jesus.


200 Responses to “Longing for a Heavenly Country”

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  1. 151
    Marc and Charity says:

    Wow Melissa, thank you. I can’t really express what that does to my heart right now.

  2. 152
    Vicky says:

    You absolutely nailed it Melissa! Thank you so much for your insight into this place that I sometimes go without rhyme nor reason. Thank you also for sharing your heart to let others know they are not alone in the seemingly unexplainable! Isn’t that just like the devil, make us feel like we are all alone and no one else feels that way so there must be something wrong with us? UGH! This target is still on the move.
    Thanks again Melissa and have an incredible day!
    Desperately Lost Without Him,

  3. 153
    Beth says:

    No, Melissa, you are not alone in the restlessness. I too, don’t really have any problems, but something just-isn’t-right.

    May the Lord minister to all those who feel the same….

  4. 154
    valerie says:

    Melissa, thank you. That was so well written.
    I felt like that the weekend after Thanksgiving. My husband brought the Christmas tree and other items in and he left for the day, which was fine. I like to play music and decorate and clean when he’s gone. Our kids are grown, so I was alone putting the things out. Maybe it was just seeing all of the memories of things I have put out for the past 27 plus years, but a sadness came over me. I had just spent Thanksgiving with 16 family members. My kids and husband are wonderful, I still have parents who are very much alive and well, I have wonderful friends…church, job etc. yet I kept feeling so sad. Sometimes I do feel like I am interceeding for someone when I get like that. I called my daughter and she was fine. I know back in her college days sometimes I’d feel a certain sadness and call her and she’d be feeling the same way.
    This last week when I was feeling this way, I just thanked God for all of my blessings. I’m weird sometimes because I start thinking that things won’t always be as good as they are now. I won’t always have my parents etc. That’s when I have to think differently. I do have all of this today and I’m blessed.
    Thank you for your wonderful post and thank you and your family for being honest with us.
    I truly can’t wait for heaven.
    I just finished “A Woman’s Heart” and your mom talked about what won’t be in heaven. It was so good. Rev. 4
    I would like to be a grandma before I go…. 🙂
    Love to all,

  5. 155
    Patty says:

    What a powerful word you brought to us. Thank you so much!! The battles have been many and long lately and it was encouraging to read your words.

    Have a blessed day!!


  6. 156
    Anonymous says:

    I feel this a lot. Often it is a longing for God, I miss him. Can’t explain it. Want to be closer and feel so inadiquate. Often it is when I have messed up and feel alone. Guess that’s not exactly the same thing but still, want to go home.

  7. 157
    The Petro's says:

    I am so excited to have found this blog. I saw Beth in Birmingham a couple of years ago, and my life has been changed ever since. Before, the “Girls” would get together to play cards, now we get together and do our Beth Moore study. I can’t wait to check this daily!

    Merry Christmas!

  8. 158
    Wendy from Jax,FL says:

    Wow Melissa, an amazing devotional right on this blog that is perfect for how I’ve been feeling this week. In fact, the very day you wrote it, I was feeling this way. I fit into the category of ‘so blessed I cannot take it all in’, and yet the underlying nag is still there—that there is more to come. I look forward to that day with you! God bless you for sharing your Bible knowledge and your tender heart.

  9. 159
    It's All About Him says:

    I have a name! I have a blog name! I’m so excited…I’ve never been a blogger so for 9 months I’ve just been “ANONYMOUS”, boy that’s exciting…but now I have a name. Anyway, I’ve already responded to this post but I was scrolling through other comments and came across our sister who’s daughter had the most awful experience of having her virginity taken from her. I just had to write in and say I’m praying, dear one. Oh how I pray for that young girl and I know God can restore her. I sat and cried thinking of all the sinful mistakes I made and of her commitment which was taken from her. I’m so sorry. May God do what only He can do, to His eternal glory! And may you all be loved through this by your brothers and sisters in Christ.

  10. 160
    Karen S says:


    What words of wisdom you speak in your youth. I think as the vails are lifted off of our eyes, we decrease and christ in us increases, we long so much to be with our father. We begin to realize that what we long for in this world will not be realized until we are in the presence of GOD. We long for peace on earth, no disease, good will toward man, but the truth is this will not happen until we are in the presence of our LORD.

    I was reading in Ezekiel 48 this morning and GOD is telling Ezekiel specficially how to restore Israel and divide the land. (It is in the last books of Ezekiel that I have realized that we have a very detail oriented GOD.) The commentary in my NIV Life application study bible for Ezekiel 48:35 (p. 1472) states the following: “The book ends with a detailed vision of the new temple, the new city, and the new people-all demonstrating GOD’s holiness. The pressures of everyday life may persuade us to focus on the here and now and thus forget GOD. That is why worship is so important; it takes our eyes off our current worries, gives us a glimpse of God’s holiness, and allows us to look toward his future kingdom. Gods presence makes everything glorious, and worship brings us into his presence.” So I guess the prescription for a longing heart is to worship.

    Thanks for sharing your heart. It touched mine.


  11. 161
    the*4*of*us says:

    Amen Sister! I know exactly what you mean! I can’t wait to see my loved ones who are already with Christ, and most of all to be in His presence!

  12. 162
    thesandbox says:

    melissa-great post. i well…we all did a online personality quiz over thanksgiving. it sure brought some great laughs as we saw the outcome. interesting that we each could say that’s true…but needed a test to bring it to the table. thank you LORD that we could all laugh at our own selves and pray those impurities get skimmed off!

    anyway…one question was “do you long for heaven?” well YES! of course…and quickly my heart ached as i think of those around me that might not check the box “definitely true”. does the question get tallied from a worldly point of view?…most likely. & tho i love life…i love life in Him so much more and do long for the day i see my Savior face to face.
    lovin life in Him-lisa

  13. 163
    Kate says:

    Thank you so much for your words of encouragement. Everyone goes there at some point, but it’s always nice to know we are never alone. I long for my reunion with my daddy God!

    My dear siesta Deborah (freeindeed), hang in there. I’ve been studying addictions hard core and am convicted myself over my own legal drug addiction (caffeine). I’ve got your back in prayer. Many blessings as you press on.

    Thanks again Melissa.

  14. 164
    Emmab says:

    Facing my Mother’s aging, and the loss of both in-laws…this seems to be how I am feeling lately too.
    I don’t really want to be here without my dear Mom, cant imagine it really. I was just thinking the other day about streets of gold (maybe because I was forced to buy tile for the new bathroom…?). Heavenly streets of gold, and really seeing face to face. How cool will that ever be?
    Thanks for the eloquence, putting so many of our thoughts into writing.
    Sometimes I feel sort of fearful, but maybe it isnt fear, maybe it is restlessness and just knowing that better things lie in the Heavenly places.

  15. 165
    Teresa says:

    I just came from our last session of A Woman’s Heart, God’s Dwelling Place. I was blessed to be present at HFBC when Beth retaped this study and honored to be able to lead it for a wonderful group of women. Your words brought to mind what I had just heard your mom repeating over and over during the wrap-up of the final lesson, “No more, no more, no more”! No more pain, tears and no more vague feelings of discontent! Thank you for sharing your heart with us. Too often when I experience those same feelings I feel guilty and ungrateful for all of the obvious blessings in my life. As great as it can be in the here and now, we were created for much greater things! Right now we have treasure in a jar of clay and “…our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.” (2 Corinthians 4:17) So we do what you have done here…we encourage one another and keep praying! Bless you! Teresa

  16. 166
    dm says:

    Dear Melissa,
    Thank you so much for sharing a much needed lesson today! I thought of 1 Peter 2:11 where he says we are aliens and stangers on this earth. I think if we got too comfortable feeling inside we wouldn’t want to continue to press toward our Heavenly home. God bless you as you continue to serve Him.

  17. 167
    Roseanna says:

    Hi all,
    First time blogger here. I’m so blessed by Beth and company and wanted to say thank you for making this journey more encouraging. We do groan with anticipation for that Day!!! Please pray for my 23 year old daughter who is struggling in her faith now; that she would enjoy His presence again!!
    Agape from Bloomington, Indiana

  18. 168
    Kerry says:

    This sometimes frustrated and incomplete music teacher longs for the time when she can sing perfect harmony to the “new song” melody promised in Rev. 4.

    “You are worthy to take the scroll and to break open its seals. For you were killed and by your sacrificial death you bought for God, people from every tribe, language,nation and race.
    You have made them a kingdom of priests to serve our God, and they shall rule on earth.
    The Lamb who was killed is worthy to receive power, wealth, wisdom and strength, honor glory, and praise!
    To Him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb, be praise and honor, glory and might forever and ever.”

    Whada you sing Melissa?
    Alto, soprano?
    Come sing right next to me and together our offering will satisfy the most intimate depths of our souls. . .but best of all. . .
    we will please the ears of our KING

    in Wyoming

  19. 169
    Anonymous says:



  20. 170
    BeckyB says:

    Thank you, Melissa. You’ve expressed what many of us feel. I so appreciate your honesty and the gift God has given you to put into words an overflow of your heart. You’ve blessed me today.

  21. 171
    Anonymous says:

    Thanks Melissa Yes! I’ve days like this. It’s awesome to fathom they we will be with Him forever and ever . Even though I want to see my kids grow up and have grandbabies I still want the Lord to Hurry up and get us outta Here!

    Love your Lousinana Sister

  22. 172
    Kristin says:

    Hi Melissa! You are one popular chickie! As I came here to post there are already 205 comments and who knows how many others waiting to be posted. It seems we’re all in agreement though! Thanks for these words and saying what I often feel, but hadn’t thought about like this before. You are a blessing to us just like the rest of the Moore clan!
    Longing with you ~ Kristin

  23. 173
    Marcy D. says:


    You’re a wonderful writer, and write the very things many of us have felt at one time or another. Your writing and thought process remind me of Philip Yancey, Chuck Colson, and/or Randy Alcorn. You have that deep, feel-it-in-your-spirit take on things coupled with such a knowledge of God’s Word. Thanks Melissa for sharing your heart and being transparent. (Runs in the family, doesn’t it? 🙂 That’s one of things we all love about you, your sister, and your mom. 🙂

  24. 174
    Anonymous says:

    Okay so 205 comments later you may not even read this. But Melissa please write a book. The way you wrod things and the way you draw the reader in, wow…..
    really write your book

    Love ya
    lori in florida

  25. 175
    twinkle says:

    Thank you, Melissa, for the wise words. Jesus said, “I go to prepare a place for you…”
    I can’t wait for the walks in the garden of heaven with my Jesus. And I can’t wait for the feeling of His hand on mine.
    I have no idea what He will require of me in heaven, but I will be grateful just to sit at His beautiful feet and wash them with my tears that He has saved in a bottle. For I will cry no more. And then I will dry them with my hair. I will caress His nail-scarred hands and scarred brow and scarred side as I anoint Him with the oil of His and my suffering (for He has been with me through it all) that He has kept treasured in His Holy alabaster box. And I will be with Him forever…clothed in the finest wedding gown that has been spun with His purity out of my faith as small as a mustard seed.
    glory hallelujah…in the twinkling of an eye…come, LORD Jesus, come…

  26. 176
    Emily says:

    Melissa, You hit the nail right on the head. I used to think it was a depression. In a way it is because we long so much for things in this world, in our families and in our life to be right with God that the reality of how broken we are can seem overwhelming. Sometimes I run thru a mental checklist of any hidden sin be it a wrong attitude or whatever and I can’t find one so I chalk it up to the very thing you said. I am just plain restless to go Home and have my Heavenly Father make things right. Praise be to God though because He spurs me on to look for ways to bless Him and others by sharing Jesus with those around me. I work at a nursing home and see many dear souls at the end of their life and God has given me the opportunity to proclaim His name to them sometimes hours before they depart this world. Some accept Him, others don’t, but I know I am worshipping and bringing honor to God by loving these dear ones. Our work here on earth is not done and we all delight our Father when we press on in His work! “For we are His workmanship created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.” Eph.2:10

  27. 177
    Critty says:

    Dearest Melissa, I can relate so much to what you wrote. My mom passed away almost 3 yrs. ago from Breast Cancer (she was 53 and I was 27). I am so thankful to know that she is with the Lord yet I am so “homesick” for her…esp. when the holidays roll around. I am so thankful for the Lord and His blessings of my husband and precious 3 boys. Yet in the midst of such thankfulness and happiness there can be that uneasiness that something/someone is missing. I know that it is my mom and I too long for the day when I reunite with her but most especially my Sweet Savior. I praise Him that He gives me that hope even in the midst of my “homesickness.” Mercy Me could not have said it better in their song “Homesick.” “I close my eyes and I see your face, if home is where my heart is then I’m out of place, Lord won’t you give me strength to make it through somehow, I’ve never been more homesick than now.” Boy does that make me excited for Heaven! God will see me through this and it will bring Him great glory…Amen! Thanks for the encouraging perspective, Christy

  28. 178
    Chris says:

    Amen, Melissa. You are so wise, so honest, so clear…and through what you have shared, so comforting.

    With over 200 comments as I write this, I praise God that you are feeling validated by reaching out to us about what we all feel, but couldn’t articulate. Thank you.

    xoxo Chris

  29. 179
    Anonymous says:

    Thanks Melissa! I feel that way a LOT of the time. I dont usually share it with anyone because I dont want it mistaken to mean I dont want to live (and then people think you’re on the ragged edge about to do something stupid). It’s not that at all…it just that I cant wait to be in heaven with God! How can I be “at home” here when I know it’s SO much better where I’m going. Sometimes I just wish I was there already, but then, of course, I’m torn with what (who) is left behind.

    Also, I’m painfully aware that I’m not doing all I should to further God’s kingdom while I’m here. The “to live is Christ; to die is gain” statement has been on my mind a lot over the past several weeks. I’ve been feeling the “to die is gain” part for a long time…but I need to work on the “to live is Christ” part.

    Thanks for putting your thoughts into words…thoughts many of us have but dont know how to express. You did it beautifully!

  30. 180
    gigetgirl says:



    love the words from your heart.


  31. 181
    Jazzy J in tyler says:

    i totally know what you’re saying. i think it is a healthy longing to have. otherwise what would we have to look forward to..?! thanks for being so transparent and real.

  32. 182
    Becky says:

    Thank you so much for your words of encouragement. A long with our other siestas I also have had these same feelings. It is so good to know that we are all not alone. During the holiday seasons it is much more difficult for me at times. I am single (divorced) and my sons are grown. I sometimes feel very lonesome when I see my couple friends with their spouses holding hands and the looks of love they share. But then I remember I am not alone and someday I will be with my Lord and see those looks of love on his face. But until then I will continue on. Thanks again. This blog came at a great time.

    Attalla, AL

  33. 183
    Anonymous says:

    Beth I know your heart is so proud of who your girls have chose to become. They are willing as Keith and you have been to pay a cost to serve. I thank you all! So true Melissa , the wisdom you have spoken in your written words. Thanks for a family ministry who are all willing to share so much of them selves. After God called my son home ten years ago he was 20 yrs old. The first three years I so yearned to walk those streets to see my son. But today God has become my hearts desire, I can’t wait to see the one who has been my light and strength to press on in my journey to fulfill his purpose. I so delight in my father. I do still wait to see my son also. When I have a bad day I just have to sit at Jesus feet and think of what my baby is doing with his heavenly father. I can only imagine , the last message he preached he said he couldn’t wait to see his Jesus. I know this is the mission field God had always intended for him. God continues to affirm this in our lives. A few months back there was a visiting preacher at our church, He started to speak of our son testimony and our pastor told him that his parents were in attendance. God is a awesome God to serve and trust when we can’t understand. Love in Christ Celie Psa 130:6 My soul waiteth for the Lord more than they that watch for the morning: I say, more than they that watch for the morning

  34. 184
    HIS DAUGHTER says:

    Thank you! I am “quarantined” because I may have the MRSA staph thing and I thought, “I’m tired of all the ugly of this world and you know, I wouldn’t care one bit just to see Jesus”.
    But, as you said, we keep going on and doing what HE wills even when life is hard.
    You are unbelievable! I know your family must marvel at you.
    Blessings from a Siesta that “Knows”,

  35. 185
    Angela @ Refresh My Soul Blog says:

    Very well said! And yes I can relate.
    Much love,

  36. 186
    tj says:

    I call those days my “missing God” days. I kinda feel like I did when my husband was deployed and things were good but not quite right because we weren’t physically together.

  37. 187
    marina says:

    Melissa, that was well said I need to hear these b/c I have had one of those days full of emotions I have been crying since I got up these morining over daily things that happen in our life and that you are trying to change and make better but still keep getting attack.anyway you no what I mean when you want change in your life and you keep hitting a wall. But we do look forward towards the mark.Being in his presents.Amen,marina

  38. 188
    su says:

    I’ve had those restless feelings a lot. A lack of contentment and peace. And wondered what was the deal. Now when I feel that ache in my heart, I tell myself that it’s God wanting more of me. That it’s time to go deeper with Him. It has made a difference for me.

  39. 189
    Ann Jones says:

    Dear Melissa , It looks like every blogger has responded! I was speechless when I read your post. I read it three times. Thank you! Ann p.s. I was sadden to hear you have a boyfriend. I was hoping you could be my future daughter in law! Blessings sweet one!

  40. 190
    Anonymous says:

    I’ve recently had surgery to remove a large, cancerous tumor – after a month the pathology still isn’t confirmed, thus no known treatment. This past weekend my precious mother suddenly died. I hang between not wanting to leave this earth and wishing to be in the total presence of Jesus. I felt every word you wrote. I pray God will bless you richly for sharing and being vulnerable to the world because what you have said is of great comfort to many.

  41. 191
    Debbie says:

    This is just what I needed to read for what I’m going through in my own life right now. Thank you!

  42. 192
    Mikki says:

    Oh, Melissa…you are so wise beyond your precious years! Thank you for sharing! Much love to you!

  43. 193
    Shan in Japan says:

    Thank you for sharing. I often feel I am the only Christian with those feelings as well. I appreciated your words of encouragement and reminder.
    Amen. Come Lord Jesus!

  44. 194
    Anonymous says:

    I love it that you are talking about the Kingdom! How we need to learn more of this as that is what Jesus began to preach (Matt 4:17). The Kingdom of Heaven is like a mustard seed, yeast, a man who sowed good seed, a treasure hidden, a merchant looking and finding, a net and those instruced about it is like the owner of a house with storerooms of new and old treasures! How delicious this mystery is and how much we need to learn of it! Amy B

  45. 195
    Olson Family says:

    Melissa, What a wonderful insight you’ve been given early on in life. Our family has been willing to move around a bit – we are far from family/friends right now. And I’m asked how I can do that. But with each move, it is an adventure. I’ve never felt “I’ve found the place I want to settle in” and I’ve learned how to voice it to others. Our home on earth is temporary – I know my permanent home in heaven will not be found wanting. Plus – you can take Jesus where ever you go – we didn’t have to leave Him behind in storage!

  46. 196
    natalie in ky says:

    Hebrews 11:15-16
    And indeed if they had been thinking of that country from which they went out, they would have had opportunity to return. But as it is, they desire a better country, that is, a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God; for He has prepared a city for them.

    How sweet it is that the Lord is planted within us a desire for that heavenly country that He has prepared for His children and that He offers hope and relief from the worries of the current home if only we would look ahead!

  47. 197
    LoreeA says:

    Thank you for sharing, Melissa. What a word ‘in season’ for me! My husband had pushed it off to ‘homesickness’ and I think it truly is – ‘heavenly home-sickness.’ God bless you & protect you!

  48. 198
    mojo says:

    Dear Melissa From my experience with the living God…this is a time that we need to draw nearer to Him…He never leaves nor forsakes us…but sometimes we need to go to a special place of dwelling just you and the Father shut your mind off except for opening your heart to Him… which is easy since he dwells within each of us…God wants us to seek first His kingdom…His Servant mojo

  49. 199
    Anonymous says:

    Hey Melissa—Delayed posting but just catching up with recent to past blog. You know when I left home, went to college, went directly to work without any time off, I later needed to just go travel for awhile. Maybe that’s your void — in your photo today (dec 18th), ya got that far away look. Then I read your NOV 27th entry and well I thought you may need to get in that mustang car (mine is a harley) and just take off for a month.

  50. 200
    melinda says:

    Thanks Melissa,
    I was just reading your post from November27 today, the day I Needed to hear that Word from the Lord. I have had a downcast spirit today- something just seems off, and your post reminded me that sometimes the Sppirit promts a holy discontent, because we are never meant to settle for anything less than Him! Wow- thanks for the AHA moment I needed today to get in the groove with my precious Savior!

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