Sunday, September 25, 2011

Feeling welcome

Being missionaries, not having a home in the states, and having to travel alot, sometimes we don't feel like we belong where we are.  We are going to a church, not our home church, and not a supporting church, but we are welcome there and we have a sense of belonging.  We have family members who we can stay with who make us feel welcome, and we feel like we belong.  We visit churches, whether they are partners or not, who truly make us feel welcome.

Then we have our adopted country.  That is where we have an apartment that we can call our own. We feel God has called us there. Our team welcomes us, and our national partners welcome us, but do we really feel like we belong?  In a country where language and culture is different from what we are used to?  We have a sense of belonging, but it is not "home."

Two things I've learned in thinking about this.  One is that I want people to feel welcome, either in my presence, or in my home, for however long they need or like.  I don't want anyone to feel unwelcome, that they are a burden to me.  I want to treat them how I would like to be treated as a guest, or even better, as a member of a close knit family of which they are a part! 

The second thing that I have to remember is that this is not my true home.  As a Christian, I will never really belong , as my true home is in heaven.

John 14:1-4
“Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me. 2 In My Father’s house are many mansions;] if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. 3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also. 4 And where I go you know, and the way you know.”

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