I’m back! and the flu which was the reason for my blogging hiatus has indirectly inspired this newest post. Since I had to stay home from church services, I had the chance to watch a DVD sermon we’d just got in the mail (you can listen to “My Burden Is Light” on this website, if anyone’s interested).
In this sermon, he talked about getting rid of the old man and removing sin from our lives so we are not weighed down with excess spiritual baggage as we make our pilgrimage toward the kingdom of God. This sparked a thought I’ve been mulling over for the past few days.
I don’t know how you think about being “strangers and pilgrims on the earth” (Heb. 11:13), but I’ve always thought more about being separate from the world and making a pilgrimage out of darkness than I have about the obvious flip-side of this statement. To be making a pilgrimage out of something, there must be a destination that we are making a pilgrimage toward. In much the same way, when we become a stranger to this world, we experience a change that makes us no longer strangers to God.
At that time ye were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world: but now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ. (Eph. 2:12-13).
Because of His redemptive work, we are “no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God” (Eph. 2:19). Coming out of this world and becoming strangers to it is what we must do once we have received the gift of forgiveness that allows fellowship with God.
When we are separate from the world in how we think and behave we, like those in the Faith Chapter, “declare plainly that [we] seek a country” (Heb. 11:14). Do our lives show that we are friends of God and strangers to the world’s ways? Do we proclaim with our actions that our sense of belonging is with God, and not with this world?