Alexis A. Goring is my guest writer today. Last year she blessed us with a monthly devotion so we’re happy to have her back. Thanks for sharing with us.
Earth is Not Our Home
A devotional by Alexis A. Goring
“Dear friends, I warn you as “temporary residents and foreigners” to keep away from worldly desires that wage war against your very souls.” –1 Peter 2:11 (NLT)
I don’t belong in this world.
I spoke my thoughts aloud one evening when I only had an audience of one (God).
I’d been feeling left out a lot lately, but this time, I felt God impress me with a counterthought as soon as I said those words: Anyone who faithfully follows Jesus Christ will never belong to this world because we’re not meant to; Heaven is our true home.
Just like the author of the book of Hebrews, I long for a place where I feel like I belong. Lately, I’ve been reminded that such a place exists: Heaven.
Life on this Earth will always be filled with heartache, pain, sorrow, and every sort of injustice. This is due to sin and the evil ruler of this world (Satan). But we need to remember that, despite all the suffering, this is still a planet that God created and He is still on His Throne. God isn’t sitting beyond the sky in Heaven without any care for what’s happening to humankind; He is actively involved in everything that happens here on this Earth. Even when we don’t seek Him, He is here. Nothing is hidden from the Maker of mankind who is Lord over all (Hebrews 4:13, Ephesians 4:6).
The Bible says that “Greater is He living in me than he who is in the world” (1 John 4:4). God isn’t going anywhere. He’s here and He wants to fight our battles (Exodus 14:14). That’s why He sent His Son (Jesus Christ) to save us and give us the gift of salvation (Ephesians 2:8-9). If we accept this gift, we will receive eternal life in the most perfect paradise (Heaven), spent in the presence of the Living God.
Remember: The devil (Satan) and his demons (evil angels) are defeated (Revelation 20:7-10)! Jesus Christ did that for us (John 3:16-17). All we have to do is live for God and follow Jesus all the way to Heaven. Is it easy? No! But is it worth it? Yes! Jesus never said that choosing to follow Him would mean that your life would be pain and problem free. But He did say to take heart because He has overcome the world (John 16:33)!
Earth is not our home, so of course we are going to have the deep-seated pain of feeling like we don’t belong. But we need to realize and remember that it’s a good thing because we have the hope of Heaven, our true home! It’s a place free of pain, suffering, sorrow, death, injustice, prejudice, and all other side effects of sin.
God isn’t going to allow this sin to last much longer. Eventually, He will return to Earth and take all of His faithful followers home to Heaven. Only God knows when that will happen. (Matthew 24:36). God hasn’t even told His Son the day or the hour, so don’t believe anyone who says they know when Jesus Christ is returning. Believe God!
You can trust and believe that when God does fulfill His promise of coming back to Earth to take His people home to Heaven, everything we went through on this sin-filled planet will pale in comparison to all that God has in store for us (1 Corinthians 2:9).
I look forward to making it to Heaven and living for eternity in the presence of my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. I anticipate finally feeling like I belong in the most beautiful sense. I will not be weighed down by the woes of the world but instead, I’ll be transformed in the twinkling of an eye (1 Corinthians 15:52)…I’ll receive a perfect, immortal body of my own. I, along with everyone saved by Jesus, will grow into all God intended humankind to be before sin entered the picture back in the Garden of Eden with our First Parents (Adam and Eve).
But until that day comes, I know I have to live for it. The Bible says not to be conformed to the ways of this world but be transformed by the renewing of your mind (Romans 12:1-2). Scripture also says to not make this world our home (Hebrews 13:14).
I like the way The Message expresses 1 Peter 2:11. It reads, “Friends, this world is not your home, so don’t make yourselves cozy in it. Don’t indulge your ego at the expense of your soul. Live an exemplary life in your neighborhood so that your actions will refute their prejudices. Then they’ll be won over to God’s side and be there to join in the celebration when he arrives.”
The concept of a “heavenly homeland” is beautiful. Hebrews 11:16 (NLT) reads, “But they were looking for a better place, a heavenly homeland. That is why God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them.”
I look forward to living happily ever after for real in the city whose architect and builder is none other than the King of the Universe (Hebrews 11:10). That city is Heaven.
I’d like to share a few songs that will give hope to your heart. I’ve included a note before each song to give you the main idea:
Note: God is fighting your battles for you!
“Battles” by The Afters
Note: Keep living for Jesus every moment of your life so when He returns, He’ll find you faithful and all of those whose lives were impacted by your walk with Jesus will be found faithful too!
“Find Us Faithful” by Steve Green
Note: Heaven is better than your greatest dream! As followers of Jesus Christ, we have the hope of eternity starting with our new life in Heaven, a life that never ends and is full of perfect peace.
“Heaven’s Door” by Dwight Anderson
Be encouraged, dear friends. And remember God loves you with ALL of His Heart!