047 Coming Home

There's a beautiful scene in the movie "Antwone Fisher," which describes death for a believer, or coming Home to Heaven better than anything else I've ever seen, and is all the more touching when you realize that the film is a true story. Antwone Fisher is one of those beautiful people still walking on this earth who never had a true home on this earth during his early years, having been raised in orphanages & foster homes accompanied by traumatic childhood experiences.

His Navy Psychiatrist (one of Denzel Washington's best characters ever) encourages him to go and find his real family in order to get at the root of his problems with aggression & feelings of worthlessness. And so, when he finally does find the family of his deceased father, there comes the most beautiful scene in the whole movie, where he enters his aunt's house and meets all the relatives he never even knew he had, everybody eagerly welcoming him, introducing themselves briefly to him with excitement, until finally his aunt gives the signal to open a double door to the dining room, where the old members of Antwone's family sit awaiting him at a richly decked table, very similar to a dream he had at the start of the movie.

An old lady (presumably Antwone's grandmother), obiously too weak to even speak, knocks on the table in an effort to demand attention and beckons Antwone to come to her with outstretched hands. Gazing into his eyes, hands in his, and recognizing her long lost son in this, newly found grandson, she finally utters one heartfelt "Welcome," and in this moment you feel like, if you'll ever make it to Heaven, this will be the only word you'll want to here.

So many of us are wandering through life like Antwone Fisher, like Orphans, oblivious to the large family that awaits us when we'll finally come Home from this life's search and journey. We sometimes feel abandoned, too, worthless, often not even due to any wrong we've done, but simply because we figure that there is nobody who loves us enough to have stuck it out with us.

And yet, I am convinced that every person has a huge family awaiting them in eager anticipation, like Antwone Fisher, consisting of ancestors we may never even have heard about. We may not know them, but they know us alright.

Some folks may not be all too keen on being confronted by no high and mighty angels when they get to Heaven, perhaps confronting them with all the wrong they possible might have done. But everybody, I'm sure, can be looking forward to coming Home to their true family, the ones of whom you'll know, "that's where I belong. These are my people," and I bet that's one event making Heaven a worthwhile Place to look forward to and hope we'll eventually wind up there.

Maybe it will take some of us a longer detour to get there than others, but I have a notion that sooner or later we all will. We all will (John 1:9).

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