Beyond Housing

When I was on holiday recently I came across a block of flats with a sign saying ‘Beyond Housing’ by the door.  At intervals throughout the week I saw a number of vans bearing the same name.  A provider of social housing, I assumed.  But what a strange name!  I expect it came about after some intensive sessions of blue sky thinking, or, as it used to be called in the days before political correctness, brainstorming. 

What, though, does ‘beyond housing’ really mean, I wondered.  Housing beyond the blue horizon perhaps, or to quote Flanders and Swann, ‘seven miles from nowhere and the beyond’?  Or what might be beyond housing?  Accommodation which you carry with you, snail-like, but more up-market than a tent?  Something grand and palatial, maybe?  Perhaps I need a blue-sky thinker to give me the answer. 

But I do know one thing: one day, by God’s grace, I shall have ‘a house beyond’.  As Fanny Crosby put it:

Some day my earthly house will fall,

I cannot tell how soon ‘twill be;

But this I know – my All in All

Has now a place in heaven for me.

And I shall see Him face to face,

And tell the story – saved by grace.

The Lord Jesus said:

Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me.  In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you.  I go to prepare a place for you.   And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you unto Myself, that where I am, there you may be also.  And where I go you know, and the way you know… I am the way, the truth, and the life.  No one comes to the Father except through Me.

                                                                                         John 14:1-4,6 

And it will surely be far beyond – much more than – housing!

You will show me the paths of life; in Your presence is fullness of joy; at Your right hand are pleasures for evermore.

                                                                                                Psalm 16:11 

As for me, I will see Your face in righteousness; I shall be satisfied when I awake in Your likeness.

                                                                                                Psalm 17:15

It isn’t death, it’s glory

It isn’t dark, it’s light

It isn’t stumbling, groping, or even faith,

It’s sight!

It isn’t grief,

It’s having my last tear wiped away

It’s sunrise, and

It’s morning of eternal day.


It isn’t even praying,

It’s speaking face to face

It’s listening, and

It’s seeing the wonders of His grace.

For this is the end of pleading

For strength to bear my pain

Not even pain’s dark memory

Will ever live again.


How did I ever bear this earthly life,

Before I came up higher?

Before my soul was granted its every desire?

Before I knew the joy of meeting face to face,

The One who sought me,

Saved me, and kept me by

His grace.

 Martha Snell Nicholson