John 14:6 Jesus said to him, "I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father, but by me.
There is only one way to heaven. That is by grace through faith in Jesus Christ. There are other things people think important, such as keeping the 10 commandments, living a good life, doing the best you can - but they do not get you to heaven. There is only one way to heaven, that is because Jesus is the only one who has not only opened the door, and prepared the way, but has also prepared for us a place. That's what the faith is all about, trusting in Jesus promise that he has gone to prepare a place for us. And grace is all about how we have done nothing to either earn or deserve this gift of God which is ours through the forgiveness of sins which is ours in Jesus Christ. For it is not our contrition, nor our repentance (as good as such things are) that wash away our sins. It is only Jesus blood, and his suffering and death that have paid the debts we owe, and which bring us peace with God and life everlasting.
There is only one way to heaven, and that is by grace through faith in Jesus Christ. We keep repeating this, because in this age of pluralism, such exclusive claims as the scriptures make are not taken seriously, or are forgotten, or are not heard - it is not hard to see many who trust in something other than grace through faith in Jesus Christ. For some it is a scandal, that God should be so particular, or that God should be a jealous God, or that God should demand our undivided loyalty. It is curious that in an age when many wear the flag, that so few will openly carry the cross of our Savior. But it is only in the cross of Christ that we find true and lasting peace, and if we don't have peace with God, there is no way we will have real peace with mankind.
It is common at funerals and times of death, that we should talk about how Jesus has gone to prepare a place for us, and each age has it picture of what would make heaven perfect. Some like to speak of mansions in the sky, others speak of a heavenly lake of excellent fishing, while for others it might have something to do with golf - or other things which we imagine would make for the perfect place. One thing we do know, is that there will be no more sickness sorrow, or suffering, and that God will wipe away every tear. But for many, since this seems a distant thing, it seems something that can be postponed to a latter date, after all Jesus isn't here, so there must be plenty of time.
Sometimes we forget that Jesus has not left us alone, but he has sent his spirit to dwell in our hearts, to bring to our remembrance all the things he has said, to keep us in faith, to guide us in life. Jesus certainly wants us to know that each day maters, and that he has a plan for our lives.
But he also wants us to remember that as he has gone to prepare a place, he will also come to take us to be with him - and that this is something that we need to live in prepared readiness every day of our life, for we do not know the day or the hour, and Jesus tells us to be on watch always.