Friday, January 18, 2013

Homeless Yet Homeward Bound

For two weeks now, my wife and I have been officially homeless.  No, we are not on the streets or in our cars or anything like that, but we do not have a home.  What I do have is very loving and welcoming in-laws who are allowing us to stay with them and take over a good part of their house, but we do not have a home of our own.  The place we sold was small and, once the Lord begins to bless of with children, it would have become too small.  It was home, though.  It was home for me for two and a half years and much longer for her.  It is a home I miss, sometimes more than others, and one that will always have a special place in my heart. 

You see, it was back in 2009 when I met my wife at that little place.  For our first date, I took the long drive down, picked her up, and we had a very nice time walking the boardwalk at Ocean City.  After some time of dating, the couch in that little place became my every-other-weekend home as we made every attempt to spend as much time as possible together in our somewhat long-distance relationship.  During our time of dating, engagement, and marriage, many memories have been formed.  I miss coming home and saying (even if no one was around) "Home" everyday after my long drive from work. 

That condo has also at times been a place of refuge.  It was in that condo where my wife and I rode out hurricane Irene.  It was where we lived during the derecho that took away our power for days.  It was where I longed to be those nights I had to stay away up close to work for a snow storm and it was the place I rushed to get to the next day.  It was the place that I drove right through Super Storm Sandy to get to jut to be home.  Then there were those nightmare drives through terrible snow over several hours that I endured just because I wanted to be home.  I remember having fires on cold snowy Winter days and I remember trying to stay cool during that previously mentioned derecho when we lost power for days. 

When I think about it, though, the condo was not really home at all.  It was not my condo I met back in 2009, but it was my wife.  I did not sleep on that couch while we were dating because it was not comfortable!  In fact, not only was it uncomfortable, but my wife's roommate was a night owl and so it was never an undisturbed sleep!  I did not make that drive every other weekend to spend time with a condo and when I got married I did not move into the condo for the condo's sake.  In fact, those memories I have are memories of my wife.  The condo was only the setting.  As for refuge, what I missed was my wife those nights I had to stay away and those long hard drives in bad weather were always to get home to her.  That condo was where I lived, but with my wife was and is still my home.  Even now when I have no place of my own to live, I have a beautiful, loving, and, most of all, Godly wife to live life with. 

And then I thought some more and realized that this is what Heaven is about.  It is not about my wife, but it is about us meeting our Groom.  Heaven is about the grand finale of the story of the church and that is Marriage Supper of the Lamb and our eternity, with our Lord, in indescribably Paradise.  And that brings up my final point.  The Bible does not tell us in great detail what Heaven is like and what our eternal life in Heaven will be like.  Sure there are allusions here and there, but nothing that tells us with any true clarity.  We get some bit of the setting, but nothing of exactly it will be like other than that it will be amazing.  Personally, I do not think we need to know.  What I mean is that Heaven, as amazing as it will be, is merely a setting.  You see, the truly awesome thing about Heaven is not where we will be, but with Whom we will be spending our eternity. 

Then I, John, saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from heaven saying, "Behold, the tabernacle of God [is] with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people. God Himself will be with them [and be] their God. And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away."  Revelation 21:2-4 NKJV

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