I’m standing in the arrival area of the Cape Town International Airport witnessing a myriad of intense family reunions. A pre-teen rushes to her mother beaming from ear to ear as the doors slide open. “I missed you SO much!” she exclaimed. Simultaneously a grandmother holds her infant granddaughter for the first time and of course all of the family are shedding tears of joy. A few minutes later, a young lady sees her fiance and jumps into his welcoming embrace. Arms locked AND lips locked…after a few moments the guy standing next to me says, “Someone blow a whistle and tell them it’s half time!”
These earthly arrivals, although filled with momentary highs, do not compare one iota with the heavenly, global arrival. Children of God from all corners of the earth are welcomed by Him and the angels into their ethereal home. The American slaves captured this passion to go home in their moving spirituals like “Blow Your Trumpet Gabriel,” I’m Going Home,” and “One More River To Cross.”
With equal passion the apostle John describes both the heavenly home and global arrival in the Revelation letter:
“Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. And I heard a loud shout from the throne saying, “Look, the home of God is now among his people! He will live with them, and they will be his people. God himself will be with them. He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” Revelation 21:1-4
“The old order of things has passed away.” Not a momentary high and back to the same old grind – but new, a never ending family communion at the throne of grace.