I have been out of the country now for three weeks. Normally, I love every minute of seeing old friends, making new ones, seeing new sites and simply being adventurous. However, yesterday I found myself longing for home.
I was tired from a weekend of little sleep, too much sun and probably not enough water. I was frustrated from being lost more than one time due to unmarked roads, and from trying to protect our team from overpaying store owners who sought to take advantage of unsuspecting tourists. As I trudged back to the house, I could not stop thinking about my friends and family, my home church, American food, the English language, well-marked roads and my own bed.
For the first time in my life, I was homesick.
In Philippians, Paul is talking to a people who lived in the Roman colony of Philippi, which was nowhere near Rome. Amidst persecution and internal strife, he commanded them to “Only let your conversation be as it becometh the Gospel…” Literally, he was saying, exercise your citizenship as citizens of heaven; you are not home. In Hebrews the writer talks about
This started to take on new meaning to me today. As Christians, we are not home. We are sojourners. This world is not our home. We must daily battle with the deficiencies of our bodies, and the schemes of our wicked hearts. We must guard against the deceitful lusts that Satan tries to trap us in, and we must faithfully march as pilgrims. As those who lived faithfully in Hebrews 11, we should desire a “better country,” longing for our heavily home.