For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord (Romans 8:38, 39). Christmas can be a lonely time for someone far from home. When that special day rolled around during my student missionary year in Japan, I picked up the phone and placed a transoceanic call to the little town of Collegedale, Tennessee, where my family lived and worked.
It was evening in Japan but morning in Tennessee when the phone rang in our house on Surrey Drive.
«Dad? It’s me.»
«Well, hello, Charlie Boy! Let me call mother and Susie to the phone.
«For ten wonderful minutes we passed words of love and affection between countries, reminding one another of how much we missed being together. I didn’t have to say, «Hey, Dad and Mom, do you still love me?» All of that was understood. Even though we were miles apart, our family bond was as strong as ever.
If we human beings can love from afar, don’t you think that God is totally capable of loving us from His home in heaven?
After I hung up, I cried for a little while, not because I was sad, but because I was so happy to know that when my year in Japan was finished, I’d be going to a place where love waited, and where familiar voices and comforting arms would welcome me home.