Thursday, October 22, 2015

Just Passing Through - Martin Wiles

I am only a foreigner in the land. Don’t hide your commands from me! Psalm 119:19 NLT

I was just passing through; I had no plans to stay forever. 

As a pastor’s son, I passed through many places. We passed through Hilda, South Carolina, and stayed for three years. Next, we passed through Jackson, Tennessee, where we stopped over for four years. Then we went to Cameron, South Carolina, where we passed through in one year. Finally, we journeyed to Orangeburg, South Carolina, and settled for five years. By the time the trip ended in Orangeburg, I had graduated high school. I thought I was finished passing through, but then God called me to preach, and I began passing through some more places: Branchville, South Carolina; Iva, South Carolina; and Harleyville, South Carolina. 

God’s Old Testament people passed through quite a few places themselves. They passed through 400 years in Egyptian slavery. Next, they stopped over in Assyria for a couple of hundred years. Then they passed through Babylon for 70. But wherever they passed through, they never forgot where home was. Neither did they forget God’s commands and their responsibility to obey them. 

I’m not considered a foreigner unless I visit another country. God, however, considers me a foreigner regardless of where I live. I can travel the world over, and I’ll never find a place I can really call home. 

My journey here is temporary. I’m just passing through. And when I leave on my final journey, I won’t be able to take any of the things I’ve accumulated with me. It makes sense, then, that I should travel with a light load instead of encumbering myself with things that make the journey unenjoyable. 

My passing throughs taught me to hold things—and even many relationships, lightly while hanging on to the one person who’d never betray or leave me. 

Believers are just passing through earth on their way to a new heaven and a new earth. What priorities we establish on our journey determines whether the trip will be enjoyable or depressing. 

As you pass through, let loving God and people be the only baggage you carry. 

Prayer: Father, thank You that when we have completed our passing through, we will be in heaven with You eternally. 

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