Today's Thoughts: A Man who Found his Home
For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul? Mark 8:36
Several years ago, I had asked my neighbor if she knew of someone who did handyman work. She immediately replied, "Use Larry. He is homeless. He only has a car and a beeper." I had seen this man frequently in the neighborhood. He was very clean-cut and polite. After meeting him, I found out that he was a Christian. While speaking to him, I knew that the Lord wanted me to ask him about his home life. I said to the Lord (in my mind), "But Lord he doesn't have a home." I heard again, "His home in Heaven." So, I asked Larry about his home life and that sparked a long response as to what happened to him. Larry told me that he used to be a multimillionaire who lived in a 32-room mansion. At first, I was not sure if I believed him, but my neighbor confirmed that his story was true. She knew Larry during those days. Through a variety of circumstances, he became homeless. Now he lives in his car, doing handiwork jobs for a living and ministering to the homeless. He said to me, "I have lived in the best addresses in Rancho Santa Fe but I'm no longer concerned about those addresses. I constantly keep my mind focused on my next Home address." Larry's answer reminded me of Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz saying, "I just want to go home." He continued to say that many people are living in homes but they are truly homeless because they are empty inside. They have no peace. He quoted me his favorite verses that he claimed on a daily basis, "I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content in whatever the circumstances may be. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any, and every situation, whether well-fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want." (Philippians 4:11-12 paraphrased)
After we finished talking with each other, I started meditating on those verses. I noticed that "I have learned" is mentioned twice. Learning to be content is a choice. Larry was not immune to fear, loneliness, worry or doubts. Larry had troubles but he trusted in Jesus' words. We are only passing through earth in these temporary tents to get to our eternal home in heaven. The world's promises do not bring peace, but Jesus brings peace. Remembering that we have a reservation in heaven keeps us focused on what matters most.
The fruit of Larry's homeless life has led many homeless and hopeless people to Christ. Larry learned to live for what matters most. Larry is now at his new permanent address as he went home to be with the Lord in his early 60s. Larry lived the second half of his life with nothing but a car and beeper; however, Larry gained everything because he lived his life here for his eternal home.
For we know that if our earthly house, this tent, is destroyed, we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. 2 Corinthians 5:1
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