Looking for Home-August 26, 2012
Psalm 84, Philippians 3
The Psalmist delights in the dwelling places of the Lord. He goes on to say how his soul longed for the courts of the Lord and that his heart and flesh sing for joy. Is that us? Do we only seek the dwelling place of God out of obligation, ritual, or ownership? Do we come to the place without ever entering His presence? When was the last time that we found delight to be in the dwelling place of Lord? The Psalmist uses words like delight, longed for, and sing for joy, these are the words of love and adoration. This is the way we might describe a first love. The Lord cautions the church in Ephesus, “But I have this against you, that you have left your first love.” Revelation 2:4.
This Psalm begs another question and that is are we at home in the home of the Lord? Do we find His presence a place of peace and comfort? The Psalmist describes those who dwell in the house of the Lord blessed. They are not blessed because they are there but because God is present. Blessed also are those whose strength is in Him. They go from strength to strength, not because of their own strength but the Lord Himself is their strength. In conclusion the Psalmist reminds us that, “Better is one day in our courts than thousands elsewhere.” It is truly blessed to be in the presence of the Lord.
Are we looking all around this world for a home and finding ourselves out-of-place? Out of place is a good way of putting it for those who long for a home with the Lord. However, sometimes in this world, it may be easy to lose sight of home and think that we may never get there. It may be tempting to just acclimate to the culture of our temporary home. As the old phrase goes, “when in Rome…”, or “what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas.” Perhaps we are trying to justify a longing that takes us away from our first love and like that church in Ephesus it may very well be that we are doing many good and right things, but we must never forget our first love. We are not of this world we are just stopping by for a few years. We have been granted citizenship in heaven.
In his letter to the Philippians Paul warns them about sinners but religious people who also sin, but aren’t as quick to acknowledge it. Paul himself states how he was found righteous through religion, and how great his person resume was, then he basically says its worthless without the knowledge of Christ. He confesses that in doing these right things he persecuted and killed the followers of Jesus. Paul goes on to describe the value of the salvation work done in Christ. He describes the work as complete in Christ and being perfected in us to the day of our going home.
Paul encourages those who are longing for home, press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. Then he describes this world, many walk (or live) each day as enemies of the cross of Christ and it brings him to tears. In verse 19 sums this world up, their end is destruction, their god is their own desires, they glory in shameful things and even that glory is shameful in comparison to the one who is glory, and their minds are set to this place as home. So they are no longer looking or seeking, but rather settling for less than God’s best. They may be deceived into thinking they can live forever, but the Psalmist’s words remind us, better is one day in His courts than thousands elsewhere.
Paul reminds the believers our citizenship is in heaven, which we also eagerly wait for a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ; who will transform the body of our humble state into conformity with the body of His glory. This is not home fellow believers do not stop longing for the dwelling of the Lord, set aside our pride and desire for our glory, so that when He who is glorious comes we will be transformed into the likeness of His glory, rather the realizing at the moment how truly inglorious we really are apart from Him.
I pray that we never stop looking, longing, and eagerly waiting to be in our homeland. I leave you know with Paul’s words, “press on..”