If I wasn't thinking about THE HEAVEN in my youthful days, it was because I had the love, which is of God, in the here and now of Earth. The attending to the Worship of God, praise, thanksgiving, and petition to God, via The Holy Sacrifice of the Mass as parents taught is to be done. The coming to knowledge by learning to read, write, and do 'ritmetic, as well as to the Sunday School lessons learning of God and all He created assisted spiritual growth in an omniscient, all-knowing, God. The JOY of putting knowledge and skills and natural gifts of God to the work of service for others yet another aspect of having a 'taste' of Heaven on earth. Work is not simply about getting a paycheck, which taxes take away. To serve others is to come into God's humble way and produces the spiritual gifts of charity, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness (meekness), generosity, faithfulness, and self-control.
The happy holiday celebrations of Christmas, Easter, Thanksgiving, Birthdays, Weddings, Anniversaries, and religious milestones of Baptisms, First Holy Communions, and Confirmations of the child-to-adult faithful, always a welcome break from the daily grind of service.
On the street, neighbors all had a mutual understanding of the common good, which provided a communion of good spirits, always there to greet and encourage each other with a smile or general chit-chat.
Life was of good order and happiness because GOD was put first in humanity's plans. A small taste of what awaits in the fullness of the eternal Heaven to come.
If not for the trials, tribulations, and sorrows that are also a part of earthly life, I may not have felt the need to give thought to THE eternal life, known as Heaven. Why is it 'bad things' happen to good people? First, because God does not want us to be 'just good.' God wants us to be Holy. PURIFIED of attachment to the material world. Second, we must be aware that the earth is not Heaven. We can and should be happy here, but always understanding it is merely the place of growing in unity with God's ONLY Divine Son, as the Son was in union with His Father. Earthly life is the place to come to know, love, and serve God and be forever happy with God in the new life to come, a spiritual place called Heaven.
I am currently dealing with the sorrow of my mom's passing to this NEW heavenly life. The grief of loss, of course, mine alone. I know that my mom's unwavering Faith in Christ's real presence in Baptism and in the Blessed Bread brought my mom sanctifying grace to her soul that raised her to new eternal life and seeing Glory of God for her faith. Her life example along with the Sunday School book facts taught me the way of Faith also and consoles me in my sorrow.
For all who abide faithfully in the Holy human and Divine family of God, started with the cleansing of Mary’s soul and continuing to all who believe by Faith in God’s sanctifying graces:
Death is swallowed up in VICTORY!! 1st Corinthians, Chapter15, Verse 54
By Faith and Sanctified Graces of a living God, especially the Holy Bread of Real Presence, we are led to 'avoid the temptations to fall from His graced Presence.’
If life is GO(O)D here, it is from the heavenly (spiritual) light reflected in our souls. This is the power of religious devotion to the Worship of our One God, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Pray for those who do not believe that they receive God's gift of Faith, and say a prayer for all, like my 93-year-old mom, who persevere in following God's way and God's truth.