About the Author

Robin is the author of For All Who Wander, her relatable memoir about wrestling with doubt that reads much like a conversation with a friend. She's as Southern as sugar-shocked tea, married to her college sweetheart, and has three children. An empty nester with a full life, she's determined to...

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  1. My favorite quote is enormous, but I read it out loud several times and then to my husband:

    “Perspective has to do with where I’m standing, the angle of my line of vision. So far I know the gospel only from the earth. I first heard the gospel here, and I’ve lived the gospel here. I know the pure gospel in part. Part of what I know is tinged with this world’s thinking. Though I desire to know Christ and his gospel purely, I know that from earth, I see “through a glass darkly.” I take heart: soon I will know the gospel from heaven’s perspective.”

    This meets me exactly where I am this week. I don’t think I think things through too much, I think God wants us to wrestle with scripture, but often I can feel like my whole life is that one night Jacob spent wrestling with the Lord. I have no doubt in his creation and his glory, I feel the spirit at work in my life daily, but there are still things I struggle with in this walk. Jean reminds me that I only know the gospel from my earthbound life.

    Oh how glorious to know the gospel purely.

    I loved what Angie said about struggling with heaven, I know that at different stages in my life I have struggled with different things. Heaven isn’t actually one of them, but to live in anticipation of glory, that’s new, I’m going to have to throw that one around for a few days.

    • Sarah,

      One of the things I’m finding I really like about this book is Jean’s words and ideas are thought-provoking. I, too, find myself lingering on certain things I’ve previously given a passing glance.

      What joy to hear how today’s section is a case of perfect timing for you :).

    • Sarah,
      Wrestle with scripture! Love that phrase, Sarah. Your post struck a cord with me. Not sure I wrestle with scripture either. I will often claim busyness for not doing it or that I can absorb from brothers & sisters in Christ but when I think back to my spiritual growing spurts, it’s when I have chewed/wrestled with some passage and the Lord has walked me thru it. There is so much value in spending the time with the Lord and His Word. To borrow a slogan…It’s priceless! Thanks!

    • Sarah,
      I so love this quote. I love the way you have spoken about it- I want to be in that place too where I can know the scriptures in the eyes of heaven and live it out that way…….So help me God.

  2. I do have admit that reading the chapters I can understand what Jean is saying but watching the video this morning really helped it make “more” sense to me. I am so grateful for this book study to help clarify a little more from what we are reading. I hope you all have a blessed day. 🙂

  3. I love how Jean shares her experience but doesn’t yoke younger woman to have the same experience… our walk with the Lord is like a marriage… it get deeper and better with time. I was walking with a young couple who was struggling in their marriage. She said she wanted what my husband and I have… I said you will… in about 20 years… if you cultivate your marriage.
    Years ago when I turned 50… this next phase… I can say heaven does look different… as my love relationship with Christ has found new depths …an ache grows more and more to be with Him. My adult children joke that I have lost my will to live 🙂 …it’s not that I don’t love life here…but I think with age…the things of this world grow strangely dim in the light of His Glory and Grace.
    and Amen to what Jean said… just live with Him today… don’t worry about the rest!!!

  4. Q1. This book is bringing awareness to me, that I hadn’t thought of before, how this is my time for faith and hope, and sharing God with those around me. I think being aware of that makes living fully now have a sense of urgency. It has really reigned in what I focus my time on.

    Q2. Angie spoke my heart. I am a fearful person, and I too believe it but don’t live like I do. I am trusting God to help me find rest.

    Q3. Life stage certainly has an effect on how we view eternity. We are human and we tend to focus on the finite things happening now. I love that this book is pushing me to look forward in a new way. I don’t know that I am doing anything specific toward that, but I know my heart has grown eager to spend more time in God’s word, and to really spend time with my Savior.

    Q4. Page 57 It’s never too soon to contemplate, revel in, and be shaped by glory. Too soon the time to glorify God with faith, hope and obedience is passed. Too soon it’s too late to bless a fallen world.

    I want every day to glorify God, to build not my faith, but the faith of those around me. Time is flying.

  5. Q1. When I was a young believer, I remember listening to a sermon that said the only thing that is going to last all eternity is the Word of God and the souls of men. For me, I try to keep that in mind. Time in Bible study and moments spent investing in people are never a waste of time. I am making a deposit in heaven when I focus on things that God values and that are not temporal. (This helps me on days when my laundry doesn’t get done — I realize that ultimately, that’s not as important as being present with my people.)

    Q2. A passage that really resonates with me about having an eternal focus is in Hebrews 12 where it says that Jesus went to the cross looking to the joy set before Him. My joy one day soon will be seeing Jesus face to face in heaven. I try to keep that in mind on tough days — just keep moving forward like Jesus did. My sweet reward is coming soon.

    Q3. I think one of the ways that I can be present and about God’s business in any season of life is to be in prayer for my family, friends, church, coworkers, and community.

    Q4. “Whatever time I have left is a gfit, a bequest, a responsibility, a stewardship.” (pp. 54-55)

    Aren’t you enjoying this question each time; hearing how different re

  6. I have long admired Jean Fleming’s heart and writing, and I was excited to know that you would be studying/reading/ruminating on her latest book. What a wise woman she is, with a real heart for God and women. I was particularly touched by Angie’s transparency on the topic of heaven. Her vulnerability and honesty on this topic, especially, is absolutely refreshing. Though I’m much older than she and have walked with the Lord since I was around twenty-five, I still struggle to know heaven is real (and yes, I believe in heaven), and also not to fear the transition between death and entering God’s presence. It is very hard to admit, because I feel that many Christians would think that such statements are heretical. Perhaps part of where I struggle is the idea of the separation of body and spirit. It is not natural, and was never meant to be; but this will occur because of the Fall. Yet, I know that God doesn’t condemn my honest doubt and wrestling about my struggle (and we can see that in how He treated Thomas). Still, I long to have the peace and assurance that Jean does and beg God for it. I also know as Angie does, deep in my heart, that every thing that the Lord tells us about heaven is true and real. It’s just hard for me, in my frail flesh to conceptualize it. (Hope I’m making sense!) I also realize that that this can be a ploy of Satan to cause me to doubt God, and I must guard against it losing my joy just because I can’t exactly conceptualize what it means to be absent from the body and present with the Lord. There is mystery here that I must, in faith, chose to leave with God. Also, Jean’s idea of understanding that what we do here truly does matter for all eternity is certainly one way to fight against Satan’s ploys and our doubts. When we are obedient to God in our actions and ministries on earth, knowing that they will matter for all eternity, it is a way to take a stand, knowing that heaven is real and that eternity, as Jean says, starts the moment we become believers. Thank you all for such real and robust sharing. I am dashing this off in a kind of spontaneous flow, so I hope I am making sense! 🙂
    Gratefully,
    Lynn

  7. “Perhaps time itself bows the knee to a man of one thing if that one thing is God.” Made me think of when God stopped the sun in it’s place because of prayer. Bold prayers by people sold out and devoted to him can change the course of time. Yay!

  8. It is so refreshing to read comments here and answers to the question. I like Jean’s definition of living in eternity- I am more conscious of that now…..everything I do is part of eternity and I have to do it well. My use of time, my marriage, raising our kids, relationships all is part of it. I will be more intentional about it – my conscious-more deliberate. There is so much more to do well…….So help me God!

  9. My favorite part of Phase 2 concerns the time after death. “My life on earth will come into focus without distortion. The pain of life, so seemingly senseless, will emerge in sparkling clarity with meaning….The tapestry woven out of sight is now revealed.” This is a great help to me with fighting my fear that I haven’t lived as I should.

  10. I loved reading these three chapters this morning. Because of a busy week, it fell that way. God had already been speaking to me about Heaven from Colossians 2. The NCV puts it this way. “Think only about things in Heaven.” That stopped me in my tracks. God spoke to me about praying Not from earth to Heaven, but praying from Heaven to earth. Then I opened Jean’s book today.
    My favorite quote is “Heaven’s perspective is meant to touch earth.”

  11. We recently had a dinner conversation about heaven. After going through some of the verses we could think of about heaven, our biggest conclusions were: (1) we don’t know much, and (2) God will be there!!!

    Probably the biggest way thoughts of heaven inform or influence my life now is that they tug me forward to take the next step. A constant, relentless, often aching pull on me. It’s like the German word “senhsucht” that Laura Boggess sometimes writes about, or like what I’ve read in Jean’s other book The Homesick Heart.

    One favorite quote from these chapters is on page 53: “Just as I see the rainbow and remember the Lord’s covenant, I see the clouds and remember greater realities.” God has given me so many little preview glimpses of heaven, like seeing the clouds, or playing drums, or hearing a live performance of Handel’s “Messiah.”

  12. I am one of those who LONGS for heaven. Every day, driving to work, I think, “Maybe Jesus will come today!” I can’t wait.

    The problem is, I focus too much on what is mentioned in question 3, the being too hard on myself. I see my faults and short-comings more than my strengths and contributions. The promise in Revelation 21:4, “He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away,” fills me with hope and keeps me going.

    The one thing that hit me the most is “I can honor God with faith and hope, both so highly valued in God’s eyes, only in Phase 1. No Need for faith and hope in heaven; all I trust God for on earth will be tangible reality there. My TIME to exercise faith and hope is nearly gone…Whatever time I have left is a gift, a bequest, a responsibility, a stewardship.” I never thought about this idea of my time on earth is really my only time to CHOOSE to exercise my faith and hope.

    I want to make this a new part of how I live the remainder of my days. “His Kingdom come on earth as it is in heaven” (Matthew 6:10) How am I living so God is glorified, seen, known because I honor Him with faith and hope in all I think, say, and do.

  13. Favorite quote to kinda sum up Ch 8-10, “Reflecting on my eternal future nourishes my endurance and joy too.” Pg 55

    I think my life and activity on earth will drastically change as I think about the fact that my days here are numbered and making them count because of eternity. #eternalperspective … My summary words for Ch 8-10. In all I do, say, think… I must keep an eternal perspective to glorify and honor God with each of my numbered days. Thinking about Heaven makes me a little anxious & nervous. Mostly because of the dying and unknown of something I’ve never done before. But spending forever with my Savior & Creator sounds unbelievably mind blowing. Who can fathom?

  14. I have suffered with chronic pain for 15 years due to degenerative disc disease, multiple back surgeries, scar tissue, nerve damage, etc. I had to give up my volunteer work at church, which broke my heart. I felt God calling me to start a website to encourage others who were suffering as I was. I finally submitted to Him, and my website/blog is now a reality (www.beckystepp.com). Even though I am only 50, my future years do not look so bright due to my illness. However, God found a way for me to be productive, encourage others, and point them to The Lord and His Word!!
    My illness and how I handle it with grace is a great way to minister to others. People ask me how I have a good attitude, and I am able to tell them that it is only through the power of Jesus Christ!!
    So girls, no matter our circumstances, we can still live with purpose and have an intentional life!!
    Becky Stepp

    • Dear Jesus, Thank You for Becky, who is willing to live in Your strength and not her own. Thank You that she finds good in a life of pain and suffering. Bless her ministry and may she always be aware of Your Presence. Amen

    • Becky,

      Wow, thanks for sharing a bit of your story. Looks like you are already doing the “Wise Reframing” that we’ll read about in chapter 22. The light of Christ in you encourages and inspires me!

      Thanking God for you,
      Monica

  15. Angie, I feel EXACTLY the same way you do. Even though I am saved through Jesus and believe that I will go to heaven when I die, I often think of heaven and death with a sense of panic and anxiety rather than rest and excitement. I have never met anyone who shares or understands the feelings that I have about heaven. I know it’s going to be good, but it’s beyond my comprehension so it scares me. Reading this book is both enlightening and difficult for me because I am having to face things that I don’t want to think about, things I am deeply afraid of. I often worry that I won’t be able to find my family or friends in heaven, and I often get sad because my husband won’t be my husband in heaven (according to the Bible, there is no marriage in heaven). I don’t know why I can’t find the rest and peace in knowing that heaven is my real home! I’ve never known anyone else who was “scared” of heaven the way I am. I’m embarrassed to even admit it. It’s so weird!

  16. The whole time I was reading this section and watching the video, I kept thinking of our pastor’s sermon on Sunday, which focused on how we all live a life of both doubt and faith and a life on earth and in heaven. He encouraged us all to meet God where we are at in this moment. Breath and wine, body and blood – Christ is here with us. I haven’t been able to get his sermon out of my head this week because it was a good reminder that God embraces us with all our doubts and fears and gives us glimpses of heaven to sustain us on our journey.

  17. Loving these videos! I loved the encouragement Jean gave to Angie about engaging with the Lord fully where you are. She said that each of us has different contributions to the kingdom. I know that this is true, but it was exactly what my heart needed to hear today.

  18. In reading these chapters 8-10. I seem to focus on the Words Joy and Enjoy. Three years ago my best friend said to me around Christmas time. Sandie I want you to find Joy in everything around you. Since then I look for Joy in the every day life even when things get really tough. The two quotes i like are” The Joy of His sure future supported Him in His Agony. Reflecting on my eternal future nourishes my endurance and joy too.”Just this l last month i was able to give the word Joy back to my best friend, One of my Daily Devotionals that i read talked about a Joy List instead of a Do list .One of the things on my Joy list is reading this book and enjoying very much. it is helping me see life in a different view than i had before

    The second is “Enjoy What a word!All words associated with enjoy (pleasure, delight,rejoice ,make happy) are gold-tingled and resound like choirs and stars singing together. When I sing worship songs at Church on Sunday mornings i can hear the heavenly choirs singing with me.and enjoying the songs with me

    Joy is a word that comforts my soul and i know that in Joy there is a hope and a future in the Redemption of Our Lord.

  19. Oh I love this woman! Jean is just a couple of years older than I and her words comfort and assure me in my present season.
    When I embrace my present season and relax in the process of God revealing Himself to me, I know I am loved, and in her final thoughts on the video…I wouldn’t worry about it. Oh that brought tears to my eyes and sweet pea e to my heart. Thank you Lord for Jean! Thank you Jean for shaing hat God has taught you in your intentional pursuit of Him. Thank you girls for doing this book club!