As Christians our citizenship is in heaven (Phil 3:20-21). 1 Peter observes, we are foreigners in this world, as we await the return of our Lord Jesus (1 Peter 2:11). In CS Lewis’ “Last Battle”, the unicorn captures the sentiment of what the new Narnia is like, ““I have come home at last! This is my real country! I belong here. This is the land I have been looking for all my life, though I never knew it till now”. On the return of our Lord Jesus, we will feel the same.
And we are citizens of our nations. The Apostle Paul in his Athens’s speech declares (Acts 17:26) God has marked out nations appointed times in history and the boundaries of their lands. Even in the vision of heaven the Apostle John (Rev 7:9) sees people from every nation, tribe, people, and language. We each have a place, a tribe, a nation we call home, and this is of God, and it appears something of this carry into eternity.
Christians have this dual perspective in our celebration of nationhood. God placed us in our nation, and this is to be enjoyed, humbly, responsibly. We are foreigners, even in our own lands, as this is not our eternal home, nor does it know the ways of our true country and King.
We celebrate Australia this coming week. We love our country, her land, and people. We are grateful to God for his abundance of blessing to our nation. We entrust our nation into his good hand and serve our people willingly for their good, and seeking God’s glory.