My wife’s garden includes these tiger lilies, which are so beautiful for the few short days they bloom. They remind me of the Western Red Lily, the Provincial Flower for Saskatchewan, the province where I was born. Each year these blossoms take me back to my heritage and roots. Then I notice the Wild Roses growing in our neighbour’s yard and I remember my growing up years in Alberta. Soon I will see the beautiful Dogwood blossoms, reminding me of my years of ministry here in British Columbia. Each flower comes with a story, a piece of my life. And I cannot forget the crocus, Manitoba’s flower, the province my wife came from. Now that is an important part of my story!
It is interesting to me that these flowers remind me of the attachment I have to each of these provinces. And with Canada Day just around the corner, I see the beautiful Maple Leaf and am reminded of the blessings of being a Canadian citizen. As I watch the news, read about other places and talk with our new neighbours who have come as immigrants to our land, I am reminded that this country, this Province, this city that I call “home” is truly a great place. We are so blessed to live where we live.
Yet as I think about this great place that I call home I am reminded that this is but a temporary home. No, I am not being transferred (as far as I know!) but anything on this earth is transitory – it does not last. Even our citizenship. This is why I have a citizenship somewhere else, a place that is eternal. Of course that place is heaven, a gift to all who put their faith in Jesus. We read in Philippians 3:20:
But our citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ …
So where do you call home? Our first response might be “Nanaimo” or “BC” or even “Canada,” but for the Christian there is always another answer: “Heaven.” That is our true home. Some days I cannot wait to be home!
– Pastor Gary