Q: Do people in heaven know what happens on earth? If so, wouldn't it make them sad to see all our suffering and evil? Isn't heaven supposed to be a happy place? This puzzles me. - J.McF.
A: Yes, heaven is a happy place - far more joyous than anything we will ever experience on earth. The reason is because in heaven we'll be safe forever from all evil, and our focus will be on Christ.
The Bible, however, does suggest that those who are presently in heaven may be aware of what is happening on earth. In Hebrews, for example, the author pictures a great arena filled with those who have gone to heaven before us, and are now cheering us on: "Since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses... let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us" (Hebrews 12:1). When Jesus' heavenly glory shone through on the Mount of the Transfiguration as He met with Moses and Elijah, they spoke about events that would soon be taking place on earth (see Luke 9:30-31).
Does this mean those who have gone before us into heaven are sad because of what takes place here? The Bible doesn't answer all our questions about heaven - but we can be certain that there is no sadness among heaven's inhabitants. They see more of God's plan than we do, and they rejoice that some day Satan will be defeated and God's victory over evil will be complete.
The most important question you can ask about heaven, however, is this: Are you certain you will go there when you die? You can be, by trusting Christ as your Savior and committing your life to Him as your Lord. Put your faith in Him today.