Never quite fitting in
Week beginning: 18th August, 2019 | By Pete Thompson | London
For, as I have often told you before and now tell you again even with tears, many live as enemies of the cross of Christ. Their destiny is destruction, their god is their stomach, and the glory is in their shame. Their mind is set on earthly things. But out citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await a Saviour from there, the Lord Jesus Christ, who, by the power that enables him to bring everything under his control, will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be like his glorious body.Philippians 3:8-21 (NIVUK)
Do we feel at home in our office or workplace? Do we feel like we really belong there? Well, if the answer is no, then that could be a sign of health for our spiritual state. Paul explains here that our citizenship is in heaven, meaning we are just passing through this world, on our way to our true home. This means that we shouldn't feel like we really belong in our earthly context. We should feel that there is something different about us from our non-Christian colleagues and friends.
This heavenly citizenship is in contrast with the fate of non-believers that Paul mentions. They are opposed to God and so will face judgment. How we might long to have the same attitude as Paul as he grieves at the thought that these people will be judged by God.
And part of our citizenship in heaven means we will be given new resurrection bodies. Gone will be all their current failings, the signs of too many coffees or late nights in the office. We will be given perfect bodies, like Jesus' resurrection body.
Our citizenship in heaven means that we should not hold too tightly to the things of this world but should seek God's glory now as we live for Jesus. How might we strive to do so this week in our work, in our actions and in our words, looking ahead to our eternal home?
1. Praise God that if we are trusting in Jesus, we know that our citizenship is secure in heaven.
2. Pray that we would grieve for how our colleagues in our workplaces and fellow students face God's judgment and that this would spur us on to share the gospel with them;
3. Pray that we would long for the day when we would be given perfect resurrection bodies.