Signposts: Daily Devotions

Tuesday, June 3

I have been a stranger in a strange land.
—Exodus 2:22

We all know, I suspect, what it feels like to be exiles, to long for the home where we know we belong. We sense sometimes, deep in our truest selves, that we most authentically are meant for somewhere else.

As Saint Augustine famously prayed, “You have made us for Yourself, O Lord, and our hearts are restless til they rest in You.”

C. S. Lewis suggests that part of the way God guides us in our wandering lives is to plant in us a kind of homing device, a bone-deep instinct for heaven. All those lonely moments when we feel alienated from our surroundings, when we know ourselves to be strangers in a strange land, are reminders from God that this world is not our ultimate home. As marvelous as the earth is, we were made for a better place.

“Apparently,” Lewis writes in his essay “The Weight of Glory,” “our lifelong nostalgia, our longing to be reunited with something in the universe from which we now feel cut off, to be on the inside of some door which we have always seen from the outside, is no mere neurotic fancy, but the truest index of our real situation. And to be at last summoned inside would be both glory and honor beyond all our merits and also the healing of that old ache.”

Loving God, you have made us for yourself, and our hearts are restless til they rest in you. Keep us homesick for heaven. Help us not to become so reconciled to where we are that we stop traveling toward you. Keep our hearts upon the pilgrim way.

The Signposts for June are written by Deborah Smith Douglas and originally appeared on in May 2005.