“Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.” ~ John 14:1-3
Most often when reading/hearing this verse, we focus on the mansions Jesus is preparing for Believers for when the get to heaven. However, there is another message in the verse that we should pay close attention to: This Earth is NOT our home.
This concept is crucial if we are going to get the correct perspective needed to live victorious, abundant, fruitful lives while we sojourn on Earth. To illustrate this, let me share a personal story.
Many years ago, I worked as a social worker for about a year for a church located in a “ghetto”. The area was rife with violent crime. (I remember seeing one young man stab another in the street below my office window.)
One day there was a frightening gunfight between the local police and some well armed thugs less than a hundred yards from our office on the church grounds. We all cowered under our desks while the gun-battle raged. We were waiting for a breather, so that we could jump into the cars and escape to our homes in other parts of the city far away from the ongoing gunfight. Well… most of us were. There was one older lady that actually lived in the area and she had nowhere to ‘escape’ to.
You see, that’s the point. When you know have a home far away from the battlefield, it gives you hope. As bad as the gunfight was, most of the social workers at that church had hope of escaping to somewhere safe. But the social worker that lived there didn’t.
Believers, we must live our lives here on earth knowing that we don’t belong here. We will escape the battles and the struggles one day.
One day we will leave this world with all its diseases, all its oppression, all its unfairness, all its perplexities; one day we will be headed home.
Now, to be clear, while we are here we do have a job (just like the social workers in the story) to do: we are called to minister to mankind: we are called to spread the Gospel, to let everyone know about Jesus and salvation through Him. But when we have completed our work, we will be headed home: we don’t live here.