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By Jan De Chambrier

“There’s no place like home.” Home - I love that word. Many of my generation immediately conjure up an image of Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz, clicking her ruby red slippers as she wills herself back to the comforts of corn-fed Kansas. Previous generations might have reclined on a creaky porch swing with a perspiring glass of icy lemonade, singing “Be it ever so humble, there’s no place like home.” We all want to go home for the holidays and home from the hospital. But what if this is not our true home?

On the night before Jesus was crucified, He comforted His disciples with these words: “My Father’s house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you?” As believers in Christ, we know that our life on earth is but a brief prelude to eternal life in the Kingdom of heaven. We understand that these earthly dwelling places house the presence of Jesus as He lives in us by the resurrection power of the Holy Spirit. While we know that this life on earth is fleeting, that our bodies will eventually pass away, we are taught to pray, “Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” What might heaven look like in your earthly home?

Several years ago, the Holy Spirit gave me a vision of myself lying in a lush green meadow next to a crystalline stream, almost like a portrayal of the 23rd Psalm. Jesus was with me, but He was reclining next to me with His head resting on my tummy. Now this part of my body has seen lots of devastation, including several major surgeries. I was curious as to why He would choose to show me this picture. I realized that He was telling me that He has found a resting place in me, a place to lay His head. In Matthew 8:20, Jesus said to one of the Pharisees, “Foxes have holes and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of man has nowhere to lay His head.” I once thought that meant that Jesus was an itinerant preacher who didn’t have a permanent residence He could call home. But the Holy Spirit revealed that Jesus wanted to find His home - a place of quiet rest - in me.

Imagine that… the King of heaven wants to be at home in you and me. He wants to find a place in us where He can recline, rest, be refreshed, put His feet up. He wants a place where He can just be Himself. In Revelation 3:20, Jesus says, “I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with them and they with me.” He is so very gracious, waiting at the door to be invited in. But does He feel at home in you? Have you given Him the keys to every door and access to every drawer? Or are there hidden places where He is not welcome to go? How are the rooms of your soul furnished? Are they heavenly designs or carnal copies?

Just as an infant in the womb has no comprehension of what awaits on the outside, we simply know by faith that no eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived the wonders that God has prepared for those who love Him. Yet He has revealed His character to us through His Word, so perhaps we can speculate as to how those heavenly rooms He has gone ahead to prepare for us might look in a spiritual sense even now in our earthly bodies as we ask for His Kingdom to come in us.

It is often said that the kitchen is the heart of the home. Do you welcome Jesus with the fragrant aroma of praise - or crusty crumbs of complaint? Are you preparing stick-to-the-ribs food that will last - or microwaving a frozen dinner? As you invite him into your dining room, are you seating Him at the head of your table, lovingly set with untarnished silver and fine china - or handing him a disposable paper plate and plastic ware? Will your conversation be filled with grace and seasoned with salt - or peppered with criticism?

As Jesus drinks His dark French-roast coffee in your living room, where and how are you sitting? Across from Him in a wing chair, feet planted firmly on the floor, arms protectively crossed? Or are you snuggled right up next to Him on the sofa, gently laughing, maybe even teasing and cajoling a little? Perhaps you’re having such a good time that you might invite Him into the family room to play a game - and He will say, “I want to play whatever you want to play because I just like to be with you.”

As the day wanes, you begin to yawn and consider getting ready for bed. You pass the laundry room on the way to your bedroom and notice a heap of dirty clothes on the floor. Do you shut the door before Jesus sees it - or ask Him to help you make them clean? As He washes those dingy grays whiter than snow, you remember a few unsettled accounts in your office. By this time, you realize He’s very willing and even eager to help, for He paid the whole price, all your debt, in His finished work on the cross. “Jesus, I need you to help me make things right. Will you show me what to do?” And He says with a voice that is love itself, “Come to Me and I will give you rest.” Then you lie down in peace and sleep, with Jesus resting His head on you. He is at home.

When Jesus finds a resting place in you and in me, He can fully reveal Himself to the world, unhindered. As we yield our spirits, souls and bodies to His Lordship, we are transformed by the renewing of our minds and conformed to His image. The family resemblance emerges as we begin to shine with the light, the knowledge of the glory of God displayed in the face of Christ (2 Corinthians 4:6). He lives so comfortably in us that the world becomes homesick when they see us. Then we can say, “Just open the door and He will come in.” That’s His promise.

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