August 30, 2010


Philippians 3:15-4:1

Our citizenship is in heaven.
Philippians 3:20


What is the place you come home to? If you’ve been away on a trip—even if you’ve had a great time—it can feel good to get back home again, where you can unwind and settle into everyday routines. Home is where things are familiar: sights, sounds, and smells; neighbors, family, community; work, shopping, banking—and of course bills and laundry.

Do you see what I see in the familiarity of home? The Bible makes clear that Christ’s followers are in the world but not of the world. In today’s reading, Paul reminds us that our citizenship is in heaven. That’s where we will truly have the feeling of “being home.” Heaven is the place where God dwells and where we as believers will go after we die. But, in Jesus, heaven has come to earth. He taught us to pray, “Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven” (Matthew 6:10). As we follow the pattern for a way of life Paul received from the Lord, we have an experience of heaven here on earth, and thus that “finally home” feeling.

Paul warns us not to put our minds “on earthly things.” God does not want us to feel “at home” where self-centered appetites and pleasures come first. Rather, we are called to live as people who pass along the love, forgiveness, compassion, and obedience received through Christ’s sacrifice. And one day we will be transformed to have bodies that will be like Christ’s. We’ll truly be home!

Lord, teach us to do your will here on earth. Help us to live as you call us to, and to serve as faithfully as the angels in heaven. Amen.

About the author — Gerrit J. Bomhof

Gary Bomhof is pastor of First Christian Reformed Church, Red Deer, Alberta. He and his wife, Jo-Ann, have four children and five grandchildren.

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