Sunday, August 14, 2011

BIBLE PICK 'EMS - Home Sweet Home

I'm a foreigner.

You are too.

I suppose all of us in this country, unless we're Native Americans, are really just *imports*. Our ancestors came from another country. I'm one generation removed from my Scottish roots (Aye, I'm just a wee lassie…call me McSharon). But, this isn't quite what I have in mind.

I'm talking about being foreigners on earth.

Because, you see, as believers we don't quite belong here.

Our home is somewhere else.

The Bible tells us that God has planted eternity in the human heart and don't we just sense the truth of that? Doesn't your heart have a longing that you can't quite describe – and you can't quite fulfill – with anything or anyone or anywhere on this humble planet?

Don't you yearn for Heaven?

The blessed assurance is that we hope for a future that is promised it's just waiting for us. Jesus told us that He went to prepare a place for us – and I believe it's the Truth!

And until that day, there will always be a part of us that doesn't belong here. There will always be a part of us that feels out-of-place. There will always be a part of us that lives like a sojourner in a foreign land…

But…(the glorious BUT!)…we have a future and a hope. We have a home just waiting for our return.

Today's "Bible Pick 'Ems" reminded me of this:

"'I will bring them back from Egypt and gather them from Assyria. I will resettle them…until there is no more room for them all. They will pass safely through the sea of distress, for the waves of the sea will be held back, and the waters of the Nile will dry up. The pride of Assyria will be crushed, and the rule of Egypt will end. By my power I will make my people strong, and by my authority they will go wherever they wish. I, the LORD, have spoken!'" (Zechariah 10:10-12)

A little background.

Zechariah's ministry began just two months after Haggai’s in 520 B.C. His message was intended for the people living in and around Jerusalem after their return from exile. For many years, the Israelites had lived in captivity, and now they were back in their homeland.

Zechariah was urging them to repentance, spiritual renewal, and a return to a right relationship with God. He desired to strengthen and comfort the small remnant of God's people.

Though these verses originally spoke to another audience, I believe that we can apply them to our current situation. This pictured return from Egypt and Assyria can be a symbolic way of expressing the hope of our future return to our heavenly homeland, and to our eternity living in the presence of God.

We believers will be gathered and returned from many countries around the world. We will be emancipated from slavery to sin, freed from captivity – we will return to Heaven triumphant!

Here's what I think God is saying to us:

"I will bring you back from Earth and gather you from all the countries of the world. I will resettle you in heavenly mansions…until there is no more room for you all! You will pass safely through the sea of death, for the wages of sin will be held back, and the power of the enemy will dry up. The pride of Satan will be crushed, and the rule of his authority will end. By my power I will make my people strong, and by my authority they will go wherever they wish. I, the LORD, have spoken!"


I like the sound of that, don't you?!

So, in many ways, this old world just isn’t "home" is it? I was reminded of this song:

This world is not my home, I'm just passing through,
My treasures are laid up somewhere beyond the blue,
The angels beckon me from heaven's open door,
And I can't feel at home in this world anymore.

Oh Lord, you know I have no friend like you,
If heaven's not my home, then Lord what will I do,
The angels beckon me from heaven's open door,
And I can't feel at home in this world anymore.

So, fellow sojourners, live like you don't belong here. Yearn for eternity. Walk the earth, but keep your eyes on Heaven. Remember with confidence the hope we have for the future.

One day we will return to our homeland – and we will be led in triumph by the LORD God Himself!

What is the one thing you're most looking forward to in Heaven?

"When in doubt, search God out!"


  1. Good morning, Sharon! A good Word and one I've been thinking about, too as my devotional reading in in Nehimiah and Ezra just now. The whole idea of "home" is attractive to me. Am not surprised to hear of your Scottish roots. I tend to be drawn to the British Isles in my spirit and way of seeing things. Thomas Cahill's "How the Irish Changed Civilization" was revolutionary to my walk about ten years ago - wow! Hope my mansion is a thatched roof cottage . . .

  2. Thank you for participating in Design Gives BAck! You are a blessing! I am so happy to comment and support Design Gives Back. May God richly bless you!


  3. Sharon,
    Be encouraged. You present the word of God and the Hope He offers in such a way that we all hunger for more. We hunger for Him and our heavenly home.
    That Scripture is an interesting choice considering everything. I noticed it said, "they will pass safely through the sea of distress for the waves of the sea will be held back."
    As Christians, we sojourn through many trials and struggles--many distresses (a deeper level of pain)--and the Lord brings us through this sea safely for He is holding back the waves so that we do not drown. That was (and still is my hope) in the darkest days of my life. He will not let us drown. Isaiah 43:2 NIV
    I look forward to heaven where trails and distresses will not exist. Where abundant joy will fill my spirit continuously and where I can share in love with my family who has gone on before me.
    Love your thought-provoking posts and how much they draw your readers into a deeper relationship with the Lord!
    May your days and weeks be filled with His delight and peace,

  4. No this world is not our home. I think of myself as a share-cropper working on God's land. But it is only temporary. One day He will move me off this piece of soil and take me Home with Him.

    I like those tee shirts that say, N.O.T.W.- Not Of This World. We are not of this world...we belong somewhere else...with our Savior and King!


  5. After the first couple sentences "This world is not my home..." began pushing into my mind. Then you wrote it, too. I love that. Won't it be fun to meet each other around the throne of God? Praising God and eating the marriage supper of the Lamb? Look for the one dancing down the streets of God--I know my feet won't be still a moment and I'm betting with your Scottish gregariousness you'll be meeting and greeting us all!

  6. A wonderful Pick 'Em this week, Sharon. I loved the song that it brought to your mind. In my head, though, I'm not singing a different one. (Based on Thursday's post, I don't mind it playing at all.) It's "Beulah Land'.

    I'm feeling homesick.

  7. Kathy - I think you'll be living on this quaint little lane in that thatched-roof cottage. I'll come visit you for tea - we'll have eternity to talk! Yes, the idea of *home* sounds so wonderfully promising...

    Kathy - Thanks for stopping by. It was my pleasure to participate in such a worthy cause. I am blessed that it was a successful venture. May God continue to do His good work through the commitment of people like you.

    Janis - Thank you for your kind and insightful comment. Yes, I look forward to being removed from trials and sufferings, and brought into the land of the Lord's rest. I also look forward to seeing loved ones that have gone ahead of me. I just found out my only aunt died on Saturday night. But oh the comfort of knowing that I will see her again.

    Charlotte - I loved the image of a sharecropper toiling in the hard, sun-baked soil of this life. And what joy to be emancipated from the slavery to sin, and set free to live in the freedom of eternity with God! N.O.T.W. Yes indeed!

    Pamela - "Won't it be fun to meet each other around the throne of God? Praising God and eating the marriage supper of the Lamb?" Other than finally seeing the face of the Lord, I can think of nothing greater than meeting all the believers! I will look for you dancing down the streets - I may be the one doing a little Highland Fling in my wee kiltie!

    Debbie - I think these times when we feel homesick for our homes are really just shadows of the eternal longings that fill our hearts for Heaven. Glad you made it home OK - and I celebrate with you the priceless joy of our confident hope that God will bring us home to heaven, too!



"So [I] have been greatly encouraged in the midst of [my] troubles and suffering, dear brothers and sisters, because you have remained strong in your faith. It gives [me] new life to know that you are standing firm in the Lord. How [I] thank God for you!" (1 Thessalonians 3:7-9)

Thanks for your comments - it is such a joy to be sharing my journey with friends like YOU!

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