I AM Home
     I've a friend in ministry who was also a fellow student in my Bible College days.  When we get together, we often share stories about those times.  One of our favorite is to relate how a fellow pastor, a brother named Kenny, had the distinction of having some very "unique" roommates back then.  One such was a fellow we'll call "Willy."  Willy had some problems, one of which was a tendency to arise at night, and wander through the house sleepwalking.  One night, Kenny awoke to see Willy at the foot of his bed, asking, in his sleep, "Where am I?  Who am I?"  Naturally startled, Kenny replied, "You're names Willy, you're in my house, now get back to bed!"  We always laugh at that story, but as I remember it, I also believe it has real connection to how so many are living today in the spiritual realm.
    There are so many who are presently sleepwalking through life, and a good number of them are found in the church.  If pressed as to who they really are, and where they really are, they likely could do so in physical terms, but spiritually, they'd be no more aware than our old friend Willy.  Yet, unlike Willy, their response would have, does have, eternal consequences.
     Hebrews 11, often called the "faith chapter," gives the real picture of the lives of those who belong to Christ.  Many examples are given of the lives of those who lived and walked by faith, but I'm particularly drawn to what is said of Abraham in verses 9-10, "By faith he lived as an alien in the land of promise, as in a foreign land....for he was looking for the city which has foundations, whose architect and builder is God.....a better country, a heavenly one."  Even when living in the land promised to him by the Father, Abraham didn't consider it home.  For him, as for all those who truly live lives of faith, He, and He alone is home.  This world, and all that it offers, is alien to them, and they to it.  The church, and all those who comprise it, are to be a colony of heaven, of the Kingdom, of Life, in the country of death.  Are we?  Are the things, values, attitudes, and behaviors of the people of God, of you and I, alien, foreign, to the world system we physically live in?  Or, have we been so long amongst the tares, the weeds, that we no longer have the characteristics of wheat?  Have we become that comfortable, made that many accommodations with the flesh spirit that rules this world?
     I've a friend who likes to use the illustration of a current luxury car commercial.  In it, a couple are driving and have become disoriented.  By accident, they become part of a road race of high performance cars.  Keeping pace with them, the wife in the passenger seat puts her window down and calls out to the driver in the race car next to them for directions.  With his face and head covered in his helmet, all he does is stare at them.  She shrugs, turns to her husband and says, "They're not from around here."  My friend says that this ought to be the reaction of all those who would call this world and its value system home, to we who have found our home in Him.  It ought to be, must be, clear, that we are not from "around here" at all.  We are not purposely weird, purposely do and say strange things, but yet, our very lives, lived in and out from Him, are in themselves, strange to everyone who knows nothing of that realm.  Paul lived so deeply in that other, better country, that he said he often appeared to be a "fool for Christ," to those observing his life, accused of being out of his mind, demented.  Does our life, our church fellowship, 
seem so to any of those presently living in the country of death?  Is the great I AM really our home, or have we found it very comfortable where we are right here, believing that this really is the better country?
     Are we from around here, wherever "here" might presently be?  Are we, in the end, very much like Willy, sleepwalking through life, not really sure of where we are, and who we are?  Are we ready to awake?  Are we ready to come home?

Blessings,
Pastor O
     
 
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  January 2018  
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