We all come from somewhere. We are natives of one land or another. Our ancestors who came before us came from a distant land. Perhaps some of us are first generation immigrants. But most aren’t. Some can trace their heritage back for many generations. Some have learned interesting facts about some in their genealogy. And some of that information is humorous. Some is sad. But one fact that stands out for all of our ancestors is that they were fighters. They were survivors. They didn’t give up when the going got tough. They kept moving forward.
And here we are today. Whether we like it or not, we’re in this place at this time. And God has a purpose for us. Oh. We may not feel like this is the time for us. We may be wondering, especially with current events, why we were appointed for just this time and place. We must remind ourselves that God knows best. His purpose will be fulfilled. His plan is perfect. Who are we to thwart it? Oh. Some will try. And some will succeed. But God’s ways are higher than our ways. God’s thoughts are higher than our thoughts. Why not trust him?
Now. There were those in biblical times who did trust him. God made promises to these people. But they never saw those promises fulfilled in their lifetime. But they didn’t stop trusting him. They believed every word he spoke, and they stood firm in their trust. Oh. If only we would do the same.
This group of people who never saw God’s promises fulfilled knew something that we need to consider today. Because we’re in the same boat. They knew they were foreigners and nomads on this earth. They knew this earth wasn’t their home. So they lived for their next home. Oh. They had work to do while they were here. Families to raise. Work to do. Debts to pay. And they did all those things. They lived their lives. Just as we are doing today. But their hope was in the future. Their eyes were set on a distant place. These people. Let’s name them. Abel. Enoch. Noah. Abraham. Sarah. They claimed God’s promise as their own. And they held onto that promise.
All these people died still believing what God had promised them. They did not receive what was promised, but they saw it all from a distance and welcomed it. They agreed that they were foreigners and nomads here on earth. Obviously people who say such things are looking forward to a country they can call their own. If they had longed for the country they came from, they could have gone back. But they were looking for a better place, a heavenly homeland. That is why God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them. Hebrews 11:13-16
Seek the Lord while you can find him. Call on him now while he is near. Isaiah 55:6
We are called to do the same. This earth isn’t our home. Oh. Sure. We live here. It’s the only home we’ve known. But it’s not unusual to have a restless feeling come over us. Is it? A longing we can’t quite put our finger on. We find ourselves longing for more. Something sure. Something out of reach. Something final. And this isn’t it. We are called to leave this home. To leave our comforts and interests. To move beyond what we have. To live for more than just this moment. Because more awaits us. Something much bigger than this earth can give.
You see. We are foreigners. We are strangers. We don’t belong here. This isn’t the home we were made for. Our home awaits us. And it’s eternal. In ancient days, it was humiliating to be a foreigner in a country. Foreigners were treated with suspicion and contempt. They were outsiders. Outcasts. They had to pay a tax just to remain a member of their community. On the social scale, they were barely above a slave. They were unwanted and mistreated.
There are those of us who are believers in Jesus Christ and have bowed before him and confessed our sins. We are foreigners in this world. We know this world isn’t what we’re made for. But here we are. And we’re waiting and longing for the day that we cross over into eternity. We’re longing to be in heaven with our Creator, Lord and Savior. Because in this world, we will have trouble. And boy. Are we having trouble.
There will be wars and rumors of wars, but don’t panic. There will be famines and earthquakes in many parts of the world. But all this is only the first of the birth pains, with more to come. Matthew 24:6-8
We are not settled. We weren’t meant to be settled on this earth. Our eternal home awaits us. And we must prepare, because the day is coming soon for us to go to that long awaited home. While there is still time to choose, choose you this day whom you will serve. As for me and my family, we will serve the Lord.
I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world. John 16:33