18 10 2010

We stopped at the gate. From the very beginning, our car was tagged as different. Visiting my parents, we moved over into the lane designated for guests and parked at the entrance to their neighborhood. Residents fly through the gated entrance. Visitors are required to stop and check in.

The guard came out in his official uniform, carrying his even more official looking clipboard. He wrote down our license plate number and asked why we wanted access to the streets just beyond the gate. We explained our connection to one of their residents and he gave us a tag, waving us through the entrance.

For the rest of our visit, we were required to carry a tag that boldly named us as “visitors”. Wherever we went, whatever part of the neighborhood we drove in, while we settled in at my parent’s house, everyone who passed by knew, without a doubt, that we were visitors. We didn’t belong here. We don’t live here. This isn’t our home. We are visitors.

For the neighborhood, those visitor tags are a matter of security. Looking at the tag, I sometimes wish they were required for Christians. We are visitors in this world. Guests, travelers, people passing through. This is not our home. We don’t live here. We don’t belong in this world. Peter tells us to “…live your lives as strangers here in reverent fear.” – I Peter 1:17. I need a ready reminder that I am just a visitor here. My home is elsewhere. I don’t need to get too comfortable, invest too much, or stake my claim in a neighborhood that is never meant to be my residence.

My Jesus Resolution today is to remember that I am a visitor. This world is a wonderful place to visit, but it isn’t my home. I want to enjoy my stay, but always keep my heart hungry to go to the place I truly belong. It is okay if the world knows I am a visitor. I don’t have to fit it, follow the crowd, or abide by its standards. Sometimes I need to be reminded that I am just a visitor. I think I will keep that visitor tag in my car for a little while longer.



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