Being outsiders

What is our place as we live here on earth?

For I am your guest— a traveller passing through, as my ancestors were before me. (Psalm 39:12bNLT)

Two phrases identify our place.

We are God’s guest for the earth is the Lord’s. As a guest, the owner may have said, feel free to use whatever you like, yet I take a circumspect attitude respecting the owners wishes. This is an attitude for life. Everything belongs to God. We are here as his guests, and need to be respectful of all he entrusted.

We are travellers passing through. Having become citizens of heaven we lost our say in our host culture. We travel through, maybe critiquing, but ceasing to demand saying, ‘This is the way it should be.’ That is not the place of a traveller.

We find ourselves in the weak place. We cannot appeal to our rights for the guest and the traveller are there at the discretion of others. The first part of the verse takes renewed significance.

Hear my prayer, O Lord! Listen to my cries for help! Don’t ignore my tears. (Psalm 39:12aNLT)

God has become our only recourse, and it is to him that we cry out as ‘the poor in spirit’. So, having nothing, we end up having the power of God available to us and are blessed with the kingdom of heaven.