The gift of being a citizen of Heaven
On Day 6 in this Advent Devotional, what is the next gift God has for us? Citizenship in Heaven! Are you someone who has moved around a bunch in your life? I am. I have lived at 21 different addresses. And I didn’t grow up in a military family… My average is just under two-and-a-half years per address.
So, let me tell you, I am so thankful for the gift in Ephesians, Chapter 2, verse 19: “This kingdom of faith is now your home country. You’re no longer strangers or outsiders. You belong here, with as much right to the name Christian as anyone.”
Last summer the New York Times ran a list of word phrases that are considered “The Happiest Words in the English Language.” They include:
“You’ve been upgraded to First Class”
“Have you lost weight?”
“Let me help you.”
“I love you.”
When a police officer says: “Be a little more careful next time. Have a nice day.”
And then there is this one…
“In the Spring of 1971, the announcement from the cockpit of a United Airlines plane, as it was rolling into position for takeoff from Vietnam to San Francisco. There were about 250 military personnel on-board. ‘The tower has already cleared us for takeoff. Let’s go home.’”
In John 14:2-3, Jesus has these comforting words for us: In my Father’s house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am. (N(V)
The context is similar to that of a groom in the Ancient Days who proposes to his bride-to-be, then returns to his family’s home. He builds an addition on to that house, a room, for he and his new bride. And when construction of the room is completed, he returns to get his bride and they are married and return to the home he built for their new family!
It is the same for us. Isn’t it great to know that no matter our wanderings on earth, no matter our failures or successes on earth, we will always be welcomed by Jesus in heaven! That is such a great gift!
So, open your arms and receive this homecoming gift this Advent; the gift of citizenship in Heaven.
Father, thank you for the precious gift of knowing that you have a prepared a place for me to call home, in Heaven. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
 NY Times, August 30, 2010, http://schott.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/08/30/welcome-home/
(c) 2011 Rich Ronald