The Tourist: Sojourners in this World

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The Tourist: Sojourners in this World

The Tourist:  Sojourners in this World

The Tourist

1 Peter 2:11-12 – Friends, this world is not your home, so don’t make yourselves cozy in it. Don’t indulge your ego at the expense of your soul. Live an exemplary life among the natives so that your actions will refute their prejudices. Then they’ll be won over to God’s side and be there to join in the celebration when he arrives.

Stephen (husband) – Honey, do you want to go up north and speak at a marriage event?

Me – (silence)

Stephen – Honey?

Me – Where?

Stephen – Seattle, Washington

Me – YES! (God is answering my dream)

I couldn’t believe it…my first speaking opportunity out of State. Since I hail from the hot state of Texas, I did what every amateur speaker/traveler does—start researching on Pinterest. My research produced articles about what to wear—flannel; what to see—the very first Starbucks; and what to eat—everything at a fancy outdoor market. As I skimmed different authors’ advice, I ran across an interesting tidbit of guidance—“how not to stand out like a tourist”.

That was all I needed…added pressure on how to not stand out!

My mind started brainstorming ways I could blend in with the posh urbanites of the Pacific Northwest. I would wear a toboggan to flatten my big Texas hair (this is no joke, just ask my family). I would trade in my Old Gringo boots for something weather proof. And I would let Stephen do most of the talking. Somehow he lacks a Texas accent, which is ironic since he has lived here for over 40 years.

As I thought about how not to stand out like the awkward tourist, I suddenly came to a stark realization—I am a tourist. I am not from Seattle, and there is nothing wrong with standing out a bit (a lot). But, to be completely honest, I’m not from Texas either.

Hebrews 11:16 says, “But as it is, they desire a better country, that is, a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared for them a city.”

We are awkward tourists to this world. We should stand out—in a good way!

We should be dressed beautifully different. God designed us to be beautiful in our world. We have the image of God stamped inside of us, and His breath is what gives us life. We should share this beauty with those who are living life with a distorted sense of who they are and whose image they are created in.

We should speak a different language. When we speak to others, our words should bring life. Even in times of correction, our words should be laced in love. When boundaries have to be set, they should be done so with a posture of reconciliation. And when forgiveness is asked for, it should be given with no strings attached.

We should behave differently. We should be leaders in whatever channel of culture God has planted us…working and influencing in a way that honors God and honors people. When society wants to shame, we should encourage. We should be willing stand out in the crowd, proclaiming a beatitude life.

We should walk differently. Our walk is not directed by man, but by the Holy Spirit. We should walk into society with powerful prayers and a direct line to Heaven’s throne. When others see us, they should see something powerfully different. The outcast, marginalized, and hurting should identify and seek us out for help.

The Road

Unlike most tourists, we are not lost. We know where we are going. And in the moments when we feel lost, we always know where our Father resides!

John 14:2-4 – “Don’t let this throw you. You trust God, don’t you? Trust me. There is plenty of room for you in my Father’s home. If that weren’t so, would I have told you that I’m on my way to get a room ready for you? And if I’m on my way to get your room ready, I’ll come back and get you so you can live where I live. And you already know the road I’m taking.”

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Karen Blandino is a pastor's wife, Texan, mother and counselor. She holds a Master's Degree in Counseling from TCU and a Bachelor of Arts in History from UTA. She has served 12 years in education. She and her husband planted 7 City Church in Ft. Worth, Texas where they serve as lead pastors.

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Hello and welcome! I am a Texas girl and pastor's wife who loves Jesus, my family and life. I have a huge passion to share my personal life experiences (the good & the not so good), my love for pretty things and to connect with other women. I hope you feel community here and join with me as we journey through life. signature

 

 
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