Last Friday was a significant day for our family: we moved. If you yourself have ever moved, you know that Moving Day is like running through the tape of the finish line, only to discover that they have placed another finish line about a mile down the road. Everything you own is in a box. The garage has furniture which may or may not stick around, and there are new places to put things and new neighbors to meet. My kids are grieving the loss of their neighborhood playmates, even as they ride cautiously around the block with the hopes of meeting someone near their age.
In other words, we are all still in transition.
The key question we are often asked when moving is, Are you settled yet? Now, most people aren’t asking us that since we only moved two days ago. But it lingers: Are you getting settled? Are you feeling settled?
The thing is, we long for “Settled.”
We nest, we create home and beauty. We surround ourselves with familiar things and people. Sometimes we fall into the trap of worshipping these things and people, or even the feeling of Settled—worship by placing that feeling above all else, grasping at ease and stability or staying in our well-worn comfort zone even when we feel ourselves being called outside.
We long for Settled because we were made for Settled.
The only problem is, as the old spiritual said, “This world is not our home…we’re just a-passin’ through.”
Our citizenship is in heaven, and we’re awaiting our Savior who is coming from our true home. (Philippians 3:20) So there will always be part of us longing for Settled. When we feel settled in this life, we are experiencing a foretaste of Home. The only problem is when we mistake Settled here for All There Is, and cling too tightly. Then we miss out on key parts of the journey, because after all, we are simply sojourning though this entire life. But rather than living as weary travelers with no home, our Savior has invited us to rest on the journey in himself.
We are living here as citizens of there, but we are still invited to be Settled—dwelling and abiding in him. He is our ultimate home, and he invites us to rest whenever we are weary. Our desire for Settled is at its essence a desire to dwell in Jesus; he invites us to settle for nothing less.
Jesus, I long for the practical benefits of feeling settled—having our house in order, knowing our neighbors, getting into a new rhythm with less unpacking. But let me not get so settled that I forget my status. I am not home yet. I love my new home, and I am grateful for your provision. I can’t wait to have people here and start making memories with those I love. But help me not to dig a hole in this state of feeling Settled; instead, let me hold it all with an open hand. Draw my heart to settle in you, to rest in you.
You have not only invited me to abide in you, but you have commanded it. So, as I go about my day, draw my heart to rest in you. Thank you for preparing a place for me that goes beyond anything I could ask or think; I know that all of the good things you have given here are mere shadows of there. Thank you for these beautiful shadows and foretastes—let them serve as signs pointing to you. Amen.