You’re Going Home
- July 20, 2017
- Chris Lawson
Apparently, I now live in Central Florida. This misplaced humidity in North Carolina is making it difficult to breathe! It got me thinking, my grandfather spent some of his early years in Florida and, apparently, it created in him a fascination with the weather. In fact, in his last years, he spent much of his time flipping between JesusTV and the Weather Channel. He would frequently make jokes about the weather like, “It’s so hot I saw two trees fighting over a dog,” or “Don’t knock the weather. If it didn’t change occasionally, nine out of ten people couldn’t start a conversation.”
As I thought about my grandfather a lot this week while the weather was crushing me, I couldn’t help but think, I would sure like to live somewhere else for a while. Maybe a new hometown in a better location.
Surely, I was made for another place. Another world. And, I was right.
Everyone builds their life on hope – both the believer in Jesus and those who are far from God. Let’s be honest, many of us build our lives on momentary glimpses of hope. We survive by saying things like: “If I can just get through this week vacation is coming!” or “If I can just get through this difficult season things will be so much better!” These glimpses or fleeting moments of hope help us survive the chaos and difficulty of life.
We use this with our children. I recently pointed out with my children how great the next two weeks were going to be. “Just wait,” I said, “you have farm camps, then the beach, then July 4th celebrations, and then we are moving into a new house! These are the best two weeks of your life!”
And, you know what? In the short term it worked! Best. Kids. Ever! Sharing! Caring! Obedience!
But, it faded. Soon they were no longer looking forward to the hope-filled weeks, but instead were dreading the end of their hope-filled weeks. Short term hope will TOTALLY change their behavior for the short term – but long term it will lead to despair because the cycle of short term hope is exhausting.
These momentary glimpses of hope aren’t lasting. Lasting hope is built on something that lasts.
The Apostle Paul knew that we would build our lives on moments of hope and that our souls would long for something more lasting. In 2 Corinthians 4:16 he says, “So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day.” In the next chapter, he goes even further, “For we know that if the tent that is our earthly home is destroyed, we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. For in this tent we groan, longing to put on our heavenly dwelling.” (2 Corinthians 5:1-2)
Tents aren’t very good against harsh weather. I don’t camp. Never have. Never will. In fact, I don’t want to stay in a Hampton Inn that’s too close to the woods. Tents are transient – not made for residence. This is why Paul calls our bodies a tent. They are our temporary residence. We were made for another place – a heavenly home. Thus, we must find our hope in that eternal home that has been prepared for us. Temporary hope leaves our souls wanting, but eternal hope leaves our souls satisfied. CS Lewis said it best, “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.”
Our culture proposes that hope can be found in these tents. It can’t. Jesus knew it. So, Jesus went and prepared a place for us. A place that is lasting. A place where hope can be rooted and produce hope for your day.