By Joanna Zuniga • Verdad Y Vida, Montrose, CO

When I was young girl we would often travel to Mexico to visit my grandparents. They lived in a small town across the border south of Brownsville, Texas. At the time we lived in San Antonio, TX where it was about a 5 hr drive. In view of our safety, considering that my mother was a single mom with four children we would often travel with my uncle.

Admittedly, my mom and uncle would talk through the whole trip! In their conversations they went on and on about things such as work, family, and health. We didn’t have smart phones or any other modern electronics that we could bring along to help keep us entertained. My siblings would fall asleep but I usually stayed awake. Often, I would eavesdrop on my uncle and mom’s conversation. 

Each time we would enter Mexico I would notice that the tone of my uncle and mom’s voices would begin to change and their conversation would shift. They would begin to converse about all the violence and corruption that was taking place. Furthermore, they would talk about people being kidnapped and tortured. Homes that were abandoned, people missing, children missing. I would become terrified! 

Everything that they conversed about would suddenly begin to turn vivid in my mind. I would look out the car window into the huge fields and somewhere out in the middle of nowhere I would see an abandoned home. It looked like on old neglected barn that was falling apart. I would wonder if maybe that was a house where someone might have been tortured. Or maybe a family once lived there with their children and is now missing. 

I am pretty sure my mom and uncle thought I was asleep like the rest of my siblings. But nope, I was wide awake listening in on all the details.

With my ample imagination I would envision all the violence right before my eyes. I learned to become alert and aware of my surroundings. Consequently, I became fearful of the long, unpaved, and isolated roads with open fields and silos. Often, we traveled several miles without seeing any people or vehicles. My uncle said it was extremely dangerous and because of that he refused to travel by night.

I wondered what would have become of us if our car broke down and we became stranded. Would we be kidnapped? Would we ever be able to reach home safely?

Eventually we would arrive at my grandparent’s house and I would jump for joy! I felt a huge sense of relief and truly believed that no one could ever hurt us at grandpa’s house. We were safe! I enjoyed being there. However, I knew we were just there for a short amount of time and it was not our true home.

Nonetheless, when it was time to go home and our driving journey began, the anxiety would return. The vivid images of violence would return. In spite of the anxiety a wonderful, hopeful, and recollected thought would always come to mind and it would penetrate my heart, “we are just passing by and we’ll be home soon!” Truly, I experienced peace in my heart knowing that we were almost home.

The anticipation of being home calmed my anxious heart!

For all believers in Christ our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ. (Philippians 3:20)

I have to remind myself that this world is not my permanent home! I am just passing by. The believer’s true home is in heaven! 

The only true home, security, and satisfaction is found in a saving faith in Jesus Christ! 

In this fallen world we will experience pain and sorrow. We may suffer loss, sickness, betrayal of friends or loved ones. Friends or family may reject us, or perhaps ridicule us because of our faith in Christ. We may hear news about corruption, war, or illnesses that are unheard of that may cause us to panic. Consequently, we may fear for the safety of our children or maybe even fear our very own safety while we are shopping.

Certainly, this world was not created to give us security or satisfaction. 

Jesus said, “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33)

God is mighty and powerful. He does not move or change. He is loving, merciful, holy, sovereign, all-knowing. We can trust Him. We can call out to Him. We can find Him and He will be found by all who truly seek Him! And He will make himself known. He will answer those who seek Him wholeheartedly. 

He brings us out of the dark valleys and helps us when we become weak. He gives strength when we seem to have no strength, encouragement when everything seems to discourage us. He will give us joy in the middle of affliction and pain. He will guide us when we can’t see. He will teach us when we submit. He will show us the way when we can’t see the way. He will give us wisdom when we don’t know what to do. He is a good Father!

And one day all believers will be home. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.” (Revelation 21:4)

The only true home, security, and satisfaction is found in a saving faith in Jesus Christ! 

Romans 10:9-10 reads, “If you declare with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved.”