Holding on tightly to a timeworn black-and-white photograph, Mrs. Wolanski guided her driver through the busy Cairo roads in search of her childhood home. Besides a few faint memories, all she possessed from her birthplace in Cairo, Egypt, was this gray photo. The old picture is of her and her mother standing on the balcony of their apartment in the Egyptian capital. Their family was forced to leave during her days as a youth because of the Arab-Israeli wars of the 1950s and 1960s. According to the New York Times, who documented the story, Mrs. Wolanski was able to return in February of this year. She waited many long years for this homegoing—she left as a child and returned at 71-years-old. While she remained exiled and far away from home all those years, what sustained her was a simple photograph of home. It is incredible that a mere picture of home provided her with years of comfort and peace.
Those who are citizens of the kingdom of God by faith in Christ also have a picture of home to sustain them while they remain in exile on the earth. As John the apostle described, “Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away”” (Rev. 22:1-4). What a glorious picture of the Christian’s eternal home! It is a place where all things are new, where God dwells eternally with His people, and where sorrow and pain are not permitted to enter or exist. All the more encouraging is that this is only a partial picture of the believer’s everlasting abode, for there is much more to come. As Paul said, “But, as it is written, “What no eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor the heart of man imagined, what God has prepared for those who love him” (1 Cor. 2:9). If you are a believer in Christ, you are not at home in this world. Right now, you are a sojourner exiled in a foreign land. One day you will be home with the Lord — God guarantees it. But while you wait for your glorious homegoing, you have a magnificent picture of home to sustain you.
Editor’s Note: Opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect the editorial opinion of the Murray Ledger & Times.