The theme of the curtains in my room is ‘Home sweet home’. There is a specific line on the curtains that says ‘Home is where the heart is’. But as a migrant, where is my heart? And therefore where is my home? Is my home South Africa, where I grew up, or is my home the UK where I am currently living?
Hebrews 11 says that the ancient ‘heroes of the faith’ (eg Abraham) realised that they were ‘foreigners and strangers on earth’ (Hebrews 11:13). The writer goes on to say, ‘People who say such things show that they are looking for a country of their own. If they had been thinking of the country they had left, they would have had opportunity to return. Instead they were longing for a better country – a heavenly one’ (Hebrews 11:14–16).
As followers of Jesus it is good to look forward to our heavenly home – eternal life with God. But what about our lives here on earth? Jesus taught his disciples to pray: ‘Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.’ So what does it mean to be at home, in the kingdom of heaven, while on earth?
The Bible teaches that, through Christ, the kingdom of heaven is a place where relationships with God, with ourselves, with each other and with creation are restored (Revelation 7:9; 21:7), and where there are no unmet needs (Revelation 7:16; 21:4).
If we want to see God’s kingdom come here on earth – for people to experience ‘home’ as God desires – then we will want to see a rebuilding of relationships and people flourishing in all areas of their lives.
On a journey
As a follower of Jesus, neither South Africa nor the UK is my real home. As one of God’s migrant people I am still on a journey. But every step I take on that journey – and every step you take on yours – matters.