Let me start by saying: I love my little place I call home in Joliet. It is nice and cozy, homey. The church and my friends make me feel like I belong, and over the past 15 years, US has truly been home for me.
And still, everytime I touch down in Bucharest and take the 3 hours road trip to the place I was born, my heart feels good. As my parents open the door to their apartment to welcome me, as we sit at the kitchen table, there is something so special about it that I cannot put into words except saying: I must be home.
There is a definite sense of I belong and do not belong when you are living in a different country. But even more there is a sense and an identity that will always stick with me, it makes me who I am, it helps me sometimes put things in perspective and sometimes makes things difficult. But it is comforting.
Every time I experience these feelings, I cannot stop thinking about who I am as a Christian. In this world and yet not of this world, a Heaven citizen walking on earth. Someone that has been called chosen and transformed by the new life in Christ and yet still walking this world, with all its beauty and its ugliness. It is a home away from home.
And every time I remember that I feel both excitement and also sadness, in part because I would want to see “your will done on earth as it is in heaven”, and see people be their best live out fulfilled lives. And then the reality of this world shakes me, and I know I need to pray for heaven to be transformed me and for my own world to be a slice of heaven here on earth.
I pray and hope that you too are experiencing that joy of belonging to God, and as you walk the streets you call home now you will be always that stranger that represents Heaven.
“If the world hates you, you know that it has hated Me before it hated you. “If you were of the world, the world would love its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, because of this the world hates you.
“They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.
For our citizenship is in heaven, from which also we eagerly wait for a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ;
All these died in faith, without receiving the promises, but having seen them and having welcomed them from a distance, and having confessed that they were strangers and exiles on the earth. For those who say such things make it clear that they are seeking a country of their own. And indeed if they had been thinking of that country from which they went out, they would have had opportunity to return. r
1 Peter 2:11
Beloved, I urge you as aliens and strangers to abstain from fleshly lusts which wage war against the soul.