I wasn’t planning on breaking my self imposed blogging hiatus today, but I read something this morning that changed my mind:
But our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, who will transform our lowly body to be like his glorious body, by the power that enables him even to subject all things to himself. Philippians 3:20, 21
The phrase “citizenship in heaven” really stuck with me. Especially since I am still struggling with what direction I should go in my writing and the death of my Uncle.
He was the only Uncle who never missed a birthday. He attended my high school graduation. If I hadn’t burnt out, he would have attended my college graduation with his face painted the team’s colors. He was the only Uncle who attended my wedding (but not the only one invited).
My Uncle was a Marine in the Vietnam War. I remember my father talking about him having flashbacks. We all think Agent Orange was the root of the stomach cancer that ended his life.
Above everything else, my Uncle loved God. It was beyond obvious by the way he loved people. All people.
(Jesus Speaking) By this all people will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another. John 13:35
Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love. 1 John 4:8
He was involved with a prison ministry and would hang out with the inmates. As a child and shallow follower of Christ, I would wonder why he hung out with prisoners. Why would you willingly spend time with convicted criminals? I know why now. Because we ALL need to know that we are loved. We ALL need to understand that God loves us, and there are times when it takes one of God’s followers to show that to us. We are His arms to hug. We are His lips to smile. We are the body of Christ (1 Corinthians 12:27). If it wasn’t beneath Jesus to spend time with society’s cast offs, it isn’t beneath us.
And as Jesus reclined at table in the house, behold, many tax collectors and sinners came and were reclining with Jesus and his disciples. And when the Pharisees saw this, they said to His disciples, “Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and sinners?” But when He heard it, He said, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. Go and learn what this means, ‘I desire mercy, and not sacrifice.’ For I came not to call the righteous, but sinners.” Matthew 9:10-13
I am so thankful that the last words I said to him were, “I love you.” I had no idea that would be the last time I would see him, and I’m not sure if he really heard me because he was on the phone when we were leaving. But I think he did because he looked up at me after I said it.
You are loved, too. I hope that you know it.