By faith he dwelt in the land of promise as in a foreign country, dwelling in tents with Isaac and Jacob, the heirs with him of the same promise. Hebrews 11:9
The dictionary defines a pilgrim as a traveler on a long journey to a holy place. Abraham lived in tents in the land which God told him (by a divine declaration), was his own inheritance. He lived like a pilgrim who usually would possess little luggage or a few belongings; constantly looking forward to returning to his city or country of residence.
Abraham did this because he was looking beyond the temporal inheritance to the eternal one secured in the heavens; whose Architect and Builder was God. He did not lose sight of what he needed or longed for because of what he got or had. He made his residence of tents, which speaks of temporariness and ease of removal.
In like manner, as Christians, we are pilgrims on earth and mustn’t lose sight of our eternal and permanent home in heaven. Therefore, we shouldn’t allow whatever we possess here on earth to dispossess us of that which we have been promised in heaven. We must set heaven as our ultimate goal and keep our eyes on eternity.
As Abraham lived in tents in his rightful and God-given land, we also should hold lightly to all our earthly possessions. We should have a temporal relationship with them, knowing that our time on earth is short-lived compared to the time we would spend in eternity; and also, because we would soon be leaving for our eternal home. It will be great folly to gain this world and lose eternity with Jesus.
While it is good to enjoy all of the many benefits God gives us on this side of eternity, we must remember that those benefits are transient; and ultimately, nothing on earth can be compared to the prosperity, inheritance, peace and joy, that await us in heaven. I would give everything to be able to see the face of Jesus in glory. With such pilgrim’s mindset, you can go through pressure and persecution, temptations and trials on earth without losing your faith, simply because you know something better is in the horizon for you.
It would serve you well to heed the admonition of the inspired Apostle in I Corinthians 7:29-31, “But this I say, brethren, the time is short, so that from now on even those who have wives should be as though they had none, those who weep as though they did not weep, those who rejoice as though they did not rejoice, those who buy as though they did not possess, and those who use this world as not misusing it. For the form of this world is passing away.”
QUESTIONS TO REFLECT ON:
+ What is your relationship with earthly possessions? How attached are you to them?
+ What are you not willing to walk away from? What are you so desperate for that you do not mind soiling your Christian testimony for?
+ What lifestyle changes will you make to adapt to living as a pilgrim on earth?