A Home to Get To
December 22, 2020
“Jesus replied, ‘If anyone loves me, he will obey my teaching. My Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him’” (John 14:23, NIV 1984).
It was a one-half mile walk from clinic to car. Halfway there in the 95-degree heat, I passed an elderly man moving slowly on a walker in the opposite direction. Unkempt and unclean, he asked me how far it was to the emergency room. I pointed the quarter-mile direction and he responded, “I didn’t know it was that far.” I told him I could get my car and take him if he would wait, and he agreed. When I helped him out at the ER, I offered him $20. “You can use this for a taxi to get you back home.”
He took the money and said, “I have no home to get to.”
“No home to get to.”
Far too many of our fellow human beings have no place to keep their belongings and no place to protect them from strangers and the weather. Rather than considering these homeless humans as trespassers or nuisances, it is absolutely our responsibility in Christ to help these folks personally and publicly to find housing, safety and food.
Seek a way in your local community to do so.
But also, we need to understand that “homeless” has a far greater meaning and involves vastly more people than those we see under bridges and in sidewalk tents. “Home” is a place we can rest without fear. Home is a place we can be ourselves. Home is a place we can find family. “Home is where the heart is” (Pliny the Elder); or, in truth, home is where the heart longs to be. Our hearts long to be where we can be loved and accepted, where we feel safe because of those around us, where we can lay our burdens on the doorstep to enter a place that makes sense, a place of peace. Home is where we know we belong. Home is where I can be me and be happy that I am. And many people are homeless.
We all need “a home to get to.” Home for some of us is the dinner table with parents and children holding hands and thanking God for His blessings. For others, it has never looked that way—but all followers of Christ do have a “home to get to.”
As followers of Christ, home is where the Father runs to greet us as His prodigal (Luke 15:11-31). Home is where Jesus gathers us into His arms when the world threatens to undo us (Matthew 23:37). Home is where our fellow believers gather us in their arms to encourage, love, pray and support.
Home is us nestled in the arms of our Lord, now; and home is a place we are headed, just beyond the gates of Glory, a place more wonderful than anything we have known.
Some of us don’t feel like we are home just now. If so, we must not give up getting there. My previous pastor, Dave Stancil, once assured me: “I don’t know when it will happen and I don’t know where it will happen; but, if you do not give up, the Shepherd will find you and bring you home.”
We all need a home to get to. We all need to get each other home.
Thank You for my home with You. Let me bring others home to meet You.