Day 3: A Far Country

Day 3: A Far Country

Read first: Hebrews 13:14

Growing up in Michigan means that you vacation “Up North.” And I loved it. Every year, we packed 5 kids, two parents, and 247 suitcases into our minivan and headed north. There was something so exciting about rounding the last bend on that dirt road and watching the landscape open to a beautiful scene of water, trees, and quaint, white cabins. Vacationing up north was my favorite family tradition.

One year, we decided to take a Christmas trip out west to visit some close friends in Arizona. We loaded the van and left our home in Michigan, this time heading south. After days and days of traveling, we would eventually arrive in Arizona, after stopping to explore the Badlands, Mount Rushmore, the Grand Canyon, and Arches National Park. It felt like we lived in our van. I hated it. When the week was over, we began the trek from Arizona to Michigan. It felt as though we would NEVER get back home. But the closer we got, the more I began to see familiar landmarks. I knew it wasn’t far. We were still traveling, but having the end in sight gave me something to look forward to; we were almost home.

Yesterday, we explored the paradox of restlessness and being at rest in Jesus. Today, I want to consider the source for that holy restlessness. Every single season we experience on this journey is ordered by God. He has a purpose for His glory and your good in every single one. That means that in our moments of restlessness, we have an anchor. We have a destination in mind: heaven. We don’t know the half of what heaven will be, but we do know a few things:

  • There is no sun, yet there is no darkness, because Jesus is the light (Revelation 21:23)
  • It is a city made by God’s own hands (Hebrews 11:10)
  • It is a place prepared for God’s children by Jesus (John 14:2)
  • The city is pure gold built on 12 foundations of precious stones (Revelation 21:18-20)
  • There is no more sickness, death, sin, or pain (Revelation 21:4)

But these things are merely a byproduct of what we actually desperately long for: to be with Christ. Heaven would be nothing more than a beautiful city without Jesus. Our journey is long, and sometimes we grow weary. But it has a destination. It has an end. That is such a comforting thought, because it means our journey has great purpose. Jesus told us in John 18:36 that His kingdom was not of this world. Hebrews 13:14 reminds us of this. “For here we have no lasting city, but we seek the city that is to come.” This is the city of Hebrews 11:10; the city that has foundations (a lasting city), whose designer and builder is God Himself. So it’s no surprise that we aren’t satisfied with what the world has to offer. The grass is withering. The flowers are fading. But God’s Word is as true and eternal as the city He has built for us. One of my favorite authors of all time is C.S. Lewis, and he said this: “If I find in myself desires which nothing in this world can satisfy, the only logical explanation is that I was made for another world.”

All I can say to that is, “yes and amen!” We are made for another world. Like the old song says, “This world is not my home; I’m just passing through.” In Philippians chapter 3, Paul says that we are citizens of heaven. I love that! Heaven is heaven because Jesus is there. He is our home. But we’re not home yet. Look for the purpose in this season on your journey. And when you feel overwhelmed or discouraged, look up—home isn’t far. We’re almost there.

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