Home Is Where the Heart IsDecember 23, 2020
Being without a home, a place to come back to at the end of a day of labor, a place to hide away from all of life’s threats and challenges, is a hard thing. A scary thing.
When confronted with eviction, even the demons begged not to be made homeless (Matthew 8:31). To them, the entrails of living pigs was a better fate than to wander the wilderness.
In the Old Testament, being homeless was a curse, a punishment. Lamentations 1:7 sorrowfully declares, “During the days of her affliction and homelessness Jerusalem remembers all her precious belongings that were hers in days of old. When her people fell into the adversary’s hand, she had no one to help. The adversaries looked at her, laughing over her downfall” (HCSB).
Joseph and Mary traveled from their home in Nazareth to Bethlehem where Jesus was born. They stayed in Bethlehem for around two years, and then, instructed by an angel, fled to Egypt. At least twice, probably more often, they were homeless for some period of time.
Later, as an adult, Jesus declared that, unlike foxes and birds, he had no home where he could lay his head (Luke 9:58).
Paul and other early messengers of the Gospel were essentially homeless, traveling ceaselessly, depending upon the kindnesses of fellow believers, sharing all they knew about Jesus with all they met. It was a hard life (1 Corinthians 4).
And yet, there was joy in the journey. Joy in the message. Joy in the hardship. There was a freedom in earthly homelessness that allowed them to never lose sight of their real home.
Walking the earth as strangers and aliens (1 Peter 2:11), recognizing that, as believers, our true citizenship is in heaven (Philippians 3:20), allows us to hold lightly to transitory stuff. Even our homes.
Having a place of our own is a good thing, but must not be an obsessive thing. Insisting on being given a new home in Pork Place did not work out well for the demons. We would do well to avoid their error.
Where our heart is, there also is our home. Earth is not it (Hebrews 13:14). Here, we are truly homeless, but always in His care. There’s no better place to be than there.
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