Comfort’s Double-edge Sword

“Beloved, I urge you as sojourners and exiles . . .” 1 Peter 2:11

“But our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus ChristPhilippians 3:20

“For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us. ” Romans 8:18

Looking at the scriptures above you get a sense of an expected perspective we as believers should share. Between the fallen world, people pleasures and our own deceitful hearts we have erased this. The apostle Peter calls us exiles and sojourners, which tells us or better yet declares to all Christians we do not belong in this world. We are in fact immigrant workers or ambassadors from a foreign kingdom on mission. Outsiders are really treated fairly, we see that very same tendency in our own hearts.

“But our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior”

The apostle Paul informs us of where we belong, to whom we belong and what our longer should be. Believers are not “American“, we are not “White”, not “Black”, “Latino”, or “other”. We are also not our sin as a child of God our identity is no longer our trespasses as Satan would have us to think. We are in Christ thus we have an eternal identity in Jesus. When the Father sees us, He sees the righteousness of His beloved Son. So with that in mind we are kids who are having a bad day at school and we are eagerly awaiting our dad to pick us up. Because the world sees us as the opposite of what daddy sees and constantly tries to get us to be something else. Imagine being in a strange place surrounded by strange kids, not knowing who is for you or against you. Now it’s lunch time and in sea of strangers you spot the familiar face of daddy. With open arms you great him and he picks you up. For that moment your troubles melt away. But lunch time soon ends and daddy leaves. You are left with a sense of discomfort and the anguish of long to see daddy again but to never leave him. Our discomfort creates a desire for just daddy and not daddy plus something else. We will not have this if we don’t love daddy like that. We won’t have is if we don’t see ourselves as daddy’s son or daughter.

“For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us. “

Because of all of this our discomfort can be endured. When we get off the bus and see daddy waiting on us, we forget. We tell daddy about our day and he encourages us; soon we forget. We tell daddy about all of the work and he helps us with, enabling us to do it; and we forget. We get up the next day to do it again because we know that no matter what comes our way our daddy is there. No matter what others say about us, only what our daddy says matter. No matter what others think about us or say who we are, our father says differently and thinks outer-worldly of us. And no matter what helps in the world of school, when we are home with daddy no of it can ever compare to the joy of being with him.

We don’t normally nor rarely see life in this world this way. Our ultimate goal in this life is to seek comfort while in enemy territory. We are exiles in a strange land filled with people who don’t know us because they don’t know our father. And yet we get frustrated with them when they don’t treat us as our father treats us. We get frustrated because we can’t seem to find comfort not even in sleep. We get frustrated with a fallen world that doesn’t work right but we never realize that we don’t belong. Nor do we realize that what this broken world calls miracles are actually how God works normally. So all of our ailments, sufferings, struggles and set backs do not exist back home. Our disgust with this world is a signal to our hearts and soul that something is wrong. But instead of a renew longing for home, we just seek more comfort in the accumulation of things. Our Savior tells us to seek the kingdom of God; which is our rightful that we have inherited through Christ. In our seeking of the kingdom of God, we find righteousness, justification, sanctification, and finally glorification. We are not to get comfortable or accustom to living in enemy lands; making the best of the bad situation. We are being made more than conquerors, whom the bad situations are use to serve our good for the purposes of the King who has sent His Ambassadors. Our discomfort is a pointer to who we really are, children of God. We despair when we forget that this world is not all to be had and when we forget that daddy is coming back. When we lose that hope or faith in his return we despair and desire to end it all.

Pastor John Piper on Philippians 3:20

“Perhaps we have settled in too much to this world. We don’t feel as homesick for Christ as Paul did.”

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