1 Peter 3:18(NLT) “Christ suffered for our sins once for all time. He never sinned, but he died for sinners to bring you safely home to God. He suffered physical death, but he was raised to life in the Spirit. ”

Welcome back! One of my favorite words in this passage today is YOU. I wonder how YOU are doing and what God is teaching YOU. In fact, if there is something cool God is doing in your life through this time, I really would love to hear it. I have been praying for you in some pretty specific ways. One thing I’m praying for is your personal connection to God. I’m praying for your friendship with Jesus, that you would experience the kind of hope only He can bring.

Let’s be honest, if I asked you to share this verse with a friend, it might be easier than to receive it for yourself. The truth is, we can tell somebody else how much God loves them, but sometimes it’s harder to think of ourselves as the recipient of God’s love.

I like the way the New Living Translation says, “He died for sinners to bring you safely home to God.”

I have a lot of memories of different homes throughout my life. The one place that sticks out most is 12034 Brewster in Livonia, Michigan. You can look it up; it’s a pretty cool house. My dad purchased it before he and my mom got married. The yard had a big grassy hill in the back. In the summertime, my brother Josh and I would roll down it like wrecking balls. We had a pool, a basketball court, a pool table, and a few really cool, big Michigan trees. When I think about that place, I miss it. It probably was the place that felt most like a home to me. It is the only home that I have memories of my mom and dad together.

Home is supposed to be a special place. It’s a place where you can laugh, cry, connect, and be yourself. It’s a place where you have access to the people you love the most. It’s a place where guests are honored and life is lived as it’s meant to be lived.

This world leaves a longing for that kind of place, a place to call home.

Stacie says to me that home for her is anywhere she can climb into bed with me at the end of the day. We’ve made our home in a lot of different places over the last 17 years of marriage. I love the thought that we could call any place home. In a shack of an apartment on James Ave in Fort Worth, Texas, to breathtaking San Jose, California. We are at home when we are together.

Jesus suffered for our sins so that we could be at home with God. He was marred beyond recognition so that you could do life with God for all eternity. When you are going through hard times, you especially need a place to call home.

One day we will see Him in all His glory! Our bodies will be made new. We will receive a new physical home. We won’t have to outbid one another or spend hours on Redfin trying to find it.

Jesus’ moment of suffering makes a way for us to live with eternal hope. He died one time; a full and final payment for all of your sins, and with that one willing sacrifice, He changed your identity from sinner to child of God. He was raised to life in Spirit, and now He invites you to that same life. Because of Jesus you have full access to the Father right now. You can enter into His presence with confidence, knowing He hears your every prayer. Jesus’ suffering has made a way for YOU!

By the power of the Holy Spirit, we can live at home with God today!

Take a few minutes to imagine yourself entering into the presence of the Father. Ask the Holy Spirit to give you increased understanding of grace and forgiveness. Spend a few minutes thanking Jesus for the price He paid so you could be at home with God.

Father, thank you for your mercy. Thank you, Jesus, for your death on a cross! Thank you for suffering for me. Holy Spirit, please help us experience “life in the Spirit” today.

In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.