Dear “Citizens of heaven,"
What joy to continue the journey to our Father’s House, surrounded by pilgrims on the journey to our heavenly home!
Already, I catch the sound of festivities being prepared for our arrival. I look ahead and I see some already entering the “… Beautiful gate… walking, jumping and praising God…” Like the once “…crippled from birth man…” who could only watch and beg from those going by, they have come under the power of “…the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth… and have “…jumped to their feet and begun to walk….”[Acts 3: 1-10]. I follow them with joyful heart!
I look behind me on the road home, and I see children, born of God and growing up into Christ. They have left all to follow Him. They are alive unto God, filled with songs and excitement. Their zeal to entice others to go with them grows more intense as the darkness of this present world increases. They remind me of my forebears who sang their song:
I am bound for the promised land…O, who will come and go with me..
My frame cannot always catch the beat and cadence of their version of the old song, but I’m cheered by the sound of their enthusiasm to join the journey!
This leg of the journey for me is sweet. It was so long ago in earth years that I “…came to myself…” by the Holy Spirit and began my journey back to Father’s house. Thinking only of serving Him, being so unworthy of ever being His “Son,” I have labored and carried heavy burdens in my desire to please Him.
But now, while “…still a long way off…,” Our Father has looked on me with compassion. In His loving embrace, His kisses cascading over my being like cooling water on a thirsty soul, He has become my Home while still away from home!
His grace has bestowed a robe that covers the signs of my past shame. Instead of just a servant’s ring in my ear, He has put the Son’s ring on my hand. Now, I am finding the final lap of the journey, hand in hand with Father, is full of comfort and peace because of the sandals He commanded for my feet!
Please indulge my exuberance as these truths recorded in Jesus’ best known story of our redemption has been quickened to my soul! [Read it again for yourself in the Spirit, for it is the Life Story of all God’s Resurrection Children. [Luke 15:11-31].
Neither the darkness of this present age which grips our world, nor the fading “shadow of the valley of our death” should overcome the “sons of Light,” who live in God’s Now-Day. Instead:
“Since we belong to the day let us be self-controlled, putting on faith and love as a breastplate and the hope of salvation as a helmet.” [1 Thess. 5:8; Prayerfully read vv.1-11].
The wrath that is now coming on those in the sleep of spiritual darkness worldwide is real. And though we may “…now for a little while…have to suffer grief in all kinds of trials, … these… come so that your faith…may be found genuine and result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed.” [1 Peter 1:6,7].
Although this “…wrath of God [that is] being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of men who suppress the truth by their wickedness…[Rom. 1:18], those who put their trust in Christ are being “…shielded by God’s power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time.”[1 Pet. 1:5] How comforting to know in our souls that wrath is not aimed at us, rather salvation is our portion now and forever! “Therefore, encourage one another and build one another up, just as in fact you are doing” [1Th.5:10]
When we’ve gone the last mile of the way
We shall rest at the end of the day
And the trials of the road will seem nothing
When we’ve gone the last mile of the way.
It will be worth it all, when we see Jesus
It will be worth it all when we see Christ
One look at His dear face all sorrow will erase
So bravely run the race, till we see Christ.
Your fellow pilgrim on the way,