Q: When we get to heaven, will we ever have worries or bad thoughts, or think about things we really shouldn't think about? Sometimes my brain wanders all over the place, and I find myself thinking about things I know I shouldn't. Will it be different in heaven? — J.S.
A: Yes, it definitely will be different in heaven! The Bible says that in heaven all sin will be banished, including not only evil actions, but also evil thoughts and emotions. The Bible says, "Nothing impure will ever enter it, nor will anyone who does what is shameful or deceitful" (Revelation 21:27).
Remember that in heaven, we will be given new and glorious bodies, similar to the body Jesus had after his resurrection. As part of this, we will be given new minds — minds that are pure and untouched by sin, and able to discover all the truths God has in store for us. I can barely imagine what that will be like, but it is God's promise to us. In that day, the Bible says, we will be like Christ, "for we shall see him as he is" (1 John 3:2).
In addition, in heaven, our hearts and minds will be filled with joy and wonder, because we will be in God's presence forever. Think of it: Someday we will be with God! All the things that distract us now will fade away in the light of God's glory and love.
Make sure of your commitment to Jesus Christ. Have you invited him into your life, and are you seeking to grow closer to him every day through prayer, the Bible, and fellowship with other believers? The closer we are to Christ, the less evil attracts us. The Bible says, "Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things" (Colossians 3:2).
Q: Is it a sin to get discouraged when things don't go the way we want them to? Did Jesus ever get discouraged? — Mrs. K.K.
A: We all get discouraged from time to time, especially when we can't do something we want to do, or we find our way blocked and life becomes difficult. Then we become like Job in the Old Testament: "Trouble comes to you, and you are discouraged; it strikes you, and you are dismayed" (Job 4:5).
Is it a sin to be discouraged? Not necessarily, although it can be if it leads to anger or makes us stop doing something God wants us to do. And we need to understand that it's not always a brief or temporary problem; sometimes discouragement takes root in our hearts and minds, and pulls us down for years. Parents get discouraged with their children; workers get discouraged with their jobs; sick or elderly people get discouraged about their future — the list could go on and on.
Did Jesus ever get discouraged? Perhaps not in the sense we usually mean it, but he certainly was burdened over people's failure to repent and turn to God. He wept over those who refused to turn to God in repentance and faith. In the last hours before his arrest and trial, he cried out, "My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death" (Mark 14:34).
What should we do when we become discouraged? The answer is to turn to God and his word for the strength and encouragement we need. Let God's words to Joshua become yours: "Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go" (Joshua 1:9).
(Send your queries to "My Answer," c/o Billy Graham, Billy Graham Evangelistic Assn., 1 Billy Graham Parkway, Charlotte, N.C., 28201; call 1-(877) 2-GRAHAM, or visit http://www.billygraham.org.)