This devotional was originally published on May 18, 2017.
Shortly after I finished grad school, my wife, our infant son and I were homeless.
I was without a job when our apartment lease ran out, and we were not able to get it renewed. Far from family, and with no place to live, we ended up moving in with some friends and stayed in their basement for 10 months. It was actually a very nice home, and the basement was an expansive game room with an attached bedroom. We were very comfortable there, ate well and enjoyed their company. But it wasn’t home.
Home is much more than the roof over your head or the furnishings that surround you, however nice those may be. Home is about identity. It is about who you are. To this day, I love returning to my childhood home, where my parents still live, because it reminds me of who I am and who I have become. Even now, my own home is still my favorite place to be because of the people there and the life we share together.
But Jesus is calling us to even greater identity in him. The only way to truly identify with him is to make our home with him. To abide with him. In John 15, Jesus uses the word “abide” 10 times in seven verses (John 15:4-10) to drive home the critical importance of being at home with him.
Ultimately, abiding with Jesus means we must become homeless, surrendering whatever claim we have on our own life and identity to find a new address in Him. Only those who recognize the total inadequacy of their own home and abandon it can truly know what it means to abide in him.
“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”
— Matthew 5:3
Many of us are content to drop in for a visit with Jesus every now and then, but how many of us are willing to make our home with him? Although he is always open for visitors, but you’ll never really get to know him, trust him and love him until you abide in him.
Ready for a move?