As we got off our plane to head for home, Kylie and I watched the sweetest reunion between a little girl, no older than 2, and her father at the airport. She ran into his waiting arms, and it moved us to see their love for each other. Well...one day we will have the same kind of homecoming reunion. We will be brought together with those in Christ who have died before us that we miss dearly, but more importantly, we will come home to the waiting arms of our Savior & our Father in heaven.
What if I told you that God could be seen in the most ordinary things every day?
What if I told you that everyday, ordinary events could teach us extraordinary eternal truths?
Would you believe me?
Hi, I’m BJ Sipe – and you’re listening to the Set Your Mind Above Podcast.
I am a Christian, a preacher, a husband, and a father.
Thanks for tuning in!
I know, I know. It is not Wednesday, and it is not even Thursday morning like I had hoped for that matter either. It is late Thursday night when I was finally able to get this finished up and uploaded for you all. Thank you so much for your patience. It’s taken a couple of day to catch up on everything after being gone for the past week, in addition to coming home to sick kids – one of which we needed to take to the pediatrician today. So, we’re a bit behind, but we’re here. We spent the past weekend down with my good buddy Hal Hammons and the church that meets at Lakewoods Drive in Georgetown, Texas. If you have been a long-time listener to this podcast, you are very familiar with Hal & his podcast, “Citizen of Heaven” that can be found on any streaming channel. While Hal and I have become so close over the past few years, this was our first opportunity to meet face to face. We were greeted with a cardboard cutout sign that read, “Mr. & Mrs. Podcast” – a very sweet nod to my wife’s new podcast for Christian women entitled, “Called & Worthy” – if you haven’t given it a listen yet, be sure to do that. We spent the weekend talking about “Revival” – focusing in primarily on the work God has called us to do as churches that perhaps we have neglected without even realizing it. I know that I was revived in my passion & my spirit after such a weekend, and I hope that others were too. Well it all went by too quickly, as these things do, and Kylie, Finley & I boarded our plane to head home on Monday. While it was so good to see Hal & so many others that we were able to reconnect with this trip, I couldn’t wait to walk through our front door to see Ava & Dane that night. I had missed my children so much, and I’m really not myself when I am away from them for that long. I know Kylie feels the same way. Our final connecting flight landed in Louisville and we started our way towards baggage claim. As we walked, I could not help to but to notice this sweet little girl in a stroller being pushed by her mother to the left of us. She couldn’t have been older than just barely two years old, judging by her size and by the way she kept saying just one word over and over again: “Dada! Dada! Dada!” She was nearly coming out of her seat as she chanted it calmly to herself, her big brown eyes that matched her long dark hair gleamed with anticipation as we inched closer to the end of the terminal and towards the ticketing area before baggage claim. As we came around the corner, her slow methodical chants suddenly turned to frantic shrieks, “DADA, DADA, DADA!” Sure enough, there waiting for her just past the security checkpoint was the man that everyone knew must have been her father. The dead giveaway was not because he was the only man standing there waiting for someone (which he was) – but the open mouth smile that extended from ear to ear on this father’s face. Her mother stopped pushing the stroller, and this little girl hoisted herself up and out of her seat and ran as fast as her little legs could take her into the arms of her kneeling father. Kylie and I looked at each other with almost tear filled eyes at this point: what an incredibly sweet homecoming reunion for this little family. We didn’t know how long they had been apart, we didn’t know what their lives were like when they would leave the airport, but this much was certain: they were so incredible happy to be together again with the ones that they loved.
As we picked up our bags and rode silently home through the night, I kept thinking about this little girl and her father. It started to get me thinking about the homecoming reunion that all of us one day are going to have who are in Christ Jesus. I thought first about the kind of reunion that each of us would have with one another in heaven. Consider the words of David in 2 Samuel 12 and vv. 22-23. As we approach this text, we find David a broken and contrite man, rebuked and ashamed for his ghastly actions towards Uriah the Hittite & his wife, Bathsheba. The child that was born from David’s plundering became sick to the point of death, as God said would happen. After the child died, David arose and washed himself and worshiped God – which he was then questioned for. David would say, “While the baby was alive, I fasted and wept because I thought, ‘Who knows? The Lord may be gracious to me and let him live.’ But now that he is dead, why should I fast? Can I bring him back again? I’ll go to him, but he will never return to me.” While the context in which David said this is much more serious than we had hoped to get into with this podcast, the nature of what he said remains true for us: death separates us from one another…but not necessarily forever. As David said, “I’ll go to him, but he will never return to me.” What did he mean when he said this? Naturally, until the resurrection of the dead when Christ returns, death is a permanent state. I think about those that I dearly loved that have gone on before me: my grandfather, for starters. I cannot bring him back, he has been gone for ten years now. I think about elders I’ve served with, friends I’ve had, and even our own two children that we lost to miscarriage. They will never return to me here…but you know what? One day, I’ll get to go to them. I cannot pretend to know what heaven will be like in great detail. I cannot say with certainty what exactly our relationships will be in our eternal home. But this I can say with complete confidence…what a wonderful day it will be when we are reunited with the saints that have gone on before us. As I teared up thinking about the possibility of one day holding my children Faith & Hope, or hugging my Pop-Pop around his neck…I started to think about the most sweet homecoming – the one we will all have with our Creator. Paul would write to the Philippians, “For me, to live is Christ and to die is gain. Now if I live on in the flesh, this means fruitful work for me; and I don’t know which one I should choose. I am torn between the two. I long to depart and be with Christ—which is far better—” (Philippians 1:21-23) Just as I was torn leaving the friends we hold so dear we got to see over the past weekend, it was so much better for us to leave and return home because it meant I was going to get to be with my children. Paul’s heart shows his great love towards Christ – he longed to remain in the flesh to do fruitful work among God’s people, and he loved them…but what he couldn’t wait for was coming through that gate and seeing his Savior face to face. To have a homecoming reunion with the one who formed our most inward parts will be the sweetest and greatest thing that has ever been in all eternity. What a glorious day it will be when we, the children of God, get to run into the open and waiting arms of our Savior & our Father in heaven.
Thank you for tuning in for this week’s episode, and I would invite you back every Wednesday for a brand-new episode each week. If you haven’t already, be sure to find us on Facebook for future announcements or even some special video sessions. If you have benefited from this podcast, share it with someone else that you think would benefit from it also. Until next time, know that I love you, that God loves you, and may we all each & every day set our minds above.