Open Your Bible
Genesis 49:1-33, Genesis 50:1-26, Isaiah 55:8-9, Romans 8:28-30
BY Erin Davis
At the end of the day, and the end of our lives, we all want to be carried home.
Israel experienced the dysfunction and joy of family (Genesis 28 and 29), life and death (Genesis 29–30, 35:18), abundance and famine (Genesis 30 and 42). He wrestled with God and walked with Him.
There is typography to all of our lives, highs and lows, peaks and valleys, times when God’s blessings flow like roaring rivers, and times when they seem like a barely trickling brook. Each individual moment, experience, or circumstance is just a snapshot; only God has the 10,000 foot view. And at every elevation, He is wooing us back toward home.
Though Israel met the love of his life and experienced smashing success in Haran, he never stopped thinking about Canaan. Though his children and grandchildren put down deep roots in Egypt, he never shook the pull of home. After calling them to himself to offer one final blessing over each of them, he gave instructions for his own burial—not in Egypt, where Joseph was interred, but with his forefathers, in the cave found in a field, in the land of Canaan (Genesis 49:29–30). He told them: “This is the field Abraham purchased from Ephron the Hethite as burial property. Abraham and his wife Sarah are buried there, Isaac and his wife Rebekah are buried there, and I buried Leah there’” (Genesis 49:29–31). Israel wanted to rest with his people.
Whether we are in a moment of success or failure, whether we find ourselves deeply rooted or adrift, whether in the highest of highs or the lowest of lows—our hearts ache for our true and future home. There is a longing, placed deep inside of each one of us, not for the land of our fathers, but the land of the Father. We know, deep down in our guts, that eternity with Him is where we belong.
Israel’s ache exists in each one of us. Like him, we want to know that we won’t have to stay forever in this foreign, broken land. In every peak and every valley, we can cling to this hope: in Christ, our homesickness will be satisfied. Someday soon—it won’t be long now—we, too, will be carried home.