How Tied Are We to this Life?

Devotional Thought of the Day:Dawn at Concordia

21  For what is life? To me, it is Christ. Death, then, will bring more. 22  But if by continuing to live I can do more worthwhile work, then I am not sure which I should choose. 23  I am pulled in two directions. I want very much to leave this life and be with Christ, which is a far better thing; 24  but for your sake it is much more important that I remain alive. 25  I am sure of this, and so I know that I will stay. I will stay on with you all, to add to your progress and joy in the faith, 26  so that when I am with you again, you will have even more reason to be proud of me in your life in union with Christ Jesus. Philippians 1:21-26 (TEV)

11  They won the victory over him by the blood of the Lamb and by the truth which they proclaimed; and they were willing to give up their lives and die. Revelation 12:11 (TEV)  

881  Non habemus hic manentem civitatem—our definitive home is not to be found on this earth. And so that we don’t forget it, at the hour of death this truth appears crudely at times, in lack of understanding, say, or in persecution or in being despised. But there is always a sense of loneliness, for even though we may be surrounded by affection, every person dies alone. Now is the time to untie all the bonds that bind us! Let us prepare ourselves at all times for that step which will bring us into the eternal presence of the Most Holy Trinity.  (1)

In two weeks, we start a new sermon series here at Concordia.

it’s about our journey to heaven, and the conversations we have, as we travel there, led by Christ, driven by the Holy Spirit.

Today’s readings in my devotional time made me think of the title.  “Are we there yet???  And other backseat conversations on the way to Heaven”

Paul is impatient to get home, to be done with the journey.  To find what the sabbath, what church, what the sacraments point to it being.  To see clearly what we can only get passing glimpses of, but ohhhh.. are those glances incredible.  Paul, who had given up so much, now seeks to give up all.  As does Josemaria Escriva – reminding us that this isn’t our home, that this isn’t the place to which we are bound, to which we have unbreakable ties. As did the martyrs of Revelation, those who didn’t love life more than the One who they shared with each other.

On one hand, there is a longing to go home and rest in the glory of God the Father, our Lord Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit. One another, we know the work we can do here, the real wor, makes a difference in the life (both eternal and temporal) of people here.  We help them know the peace that comes from knowing where our desitination is in Christ.

And so we work, aware of our own weaknesses, aware of His presence, aware of His love.

Ready to share that with those around us, ready to explain why we have hope in this life and for the next.  As we sing in our Memorial Acclimation:

“Christ has died,  Christ is Risen! Christ will come again!

We were dead in our sins, now we’re buried with Him, We are Risen with Christ! We are Given new Life! Christ will bring us home, making us His own!

Christ has died,  Christ is Risen! Christ will come again!”   (2)

So remember as you struggle through this day… this is just the journey home.  And keep your eyes our Christ, who began this journey, and will bring it to completion.


(1)   Escriva, Josemaria (2011-01-31). Furrow (Kindle Locations 3602-3607). Scepter Publishers. Kindle Edition.
(2)  From the Memorial Acclimation (Chris Gillette Worship Band Liturgy)

About justifiedandsinner

I am a pastor of a Concordia Lutheran Church in Cerritos, California, where we rejoice in God's saving us from our sin, and the unrighteousness of the world. It is all about His work, the gift of salvation given to all who trust in Jesus Christ, and what He has done that is revealed in Scripture. God deserves all the glory, honor and praise, for He has rescued and redeemed His people.

Posted on September 1, 2014, in Devotions and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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