Coming Home

The church we attended for the past two years closed its doors last month. In January 2008, we received a flyer in the mail and were visitors at the very first service. We got involved quickly and became part of the leadership team. Two years and just over one hundred Sunday mornings later, we were there for the very last service. That was five weeks ago.

God did great things for us, with us, in us, and through us as a church – worship, ministry, biblical teaching, spiritual growth, and loving relationships happened. People came to faith in Christ and those of us who already had a relationship with God through faith in Christ became more like Jesus. Then it was time for something great to come to an end.

A week ago Saturday (five weeks after our last service), many who attended our church services regularly and considered themselves part of the church family got together for a potluck reunion and birthday party celebration at our house. With the exception of some brother-sister, parent-child relationships, none of us had known each other prior to our coming together as a church family. But what I noticed about Saturday was how much and how deeply we had come to love and care for one another.

Prior to our gathering, anticipation ran high. Everyone looked forward with great excitement to our five-week reunion. People arrived and were met with warm and affectionate greetings of love and acceptance – greetings expressed through hugs, smiles, handshakes, laughter, arm squeezes, and enthusiastic pats on the back.

The house was filled with fun and laughter. A spirit of great joy and celebration prevailed as the afternoon stretched into evening. We all belonged. It was like “coming home” and none of us wanted the day to end. And if anyone has ever wondered if Christians know how to have fun, wonder no more. I have not laughed so hard for so long since I can remember!

I believe Heaven will be like last Saturday – like coming home; home to more love than we can imagine; home to joy, peace, and laughter; home to the welcoming and accepting arms of Jesus.

We are not at home here on earth. Things don’t work or fit together as they should. As Christ followers, we don’t “belong” here anymore. We don’t fit in. We’re only visiting this planet. Our true citizenship is in heaven. But for now we live in this foreign land – a land filled with sin, death, hate, injustice, greed, violence, indifference, pain, sorrow, and disappointment. There is restlessness deep within our spirits – an inward sense of disconnection.

But someday we will be “coming home” again to the place we belong – to that eternal reunion and celebration. I for one am not planning to miss it. How about you?

Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me. In my Father's house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am. ~ John 14:1-3


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