Summary: We are citizens of Michigan and citizens of the Community of God
If you have lived in Michigan any length of time you can look around and see that this is a very solid, established state. The city of Detroit was founded in 1701 by Pierre Demuth Cadillac. A fort was built on what is now Fort Street. But along the riverbank is a ribbon of a road that runs from downriver to Port Huron. That road is called Jefferson Avenue: East Jefferson out this way and West Jefferson downriver. I was born downriver, right off Jefferson. My parents lived onMa Grosse Ile in their early days and I was born in Wyandotte General, right off Jefferson.
Our scripture this morning is from the end of Chapter 3, where Paul speaks about having our conversation in heaven. Matthew Henry says that our conversation should be pointed heavenward. Point one this morning; When you are born again, you are a new creature in Christ. You have a new position, you have a new prayer, you have Christlike power and you have a new prose. Prose, manner of speech. Your thoughts are now heavenward, your thoughts are eternal. Parts of Jefferson Avenue were first made during the War of 1812. British troops were invading. The Americans, coming up from Ohio built an accordian road of logs and tree trunks all the way into the Grosse Ile area. There, battles were fought and eventually the Americans were able to free that fort downtown and win the war. That road later on was covered with bricks. The Americans then constructed a fort called Fort Wayne which is still there, downriver. This fort served for many years as a point of departure for World War One, the Second World War, and Vietnam. As citizens of this country, these men served and defended their country. Paul is telling us that we are soldiers for Jesus, who fight the spiritual forces with Christ before us. We have our conversation and life, heading for heaven. So in the way of application, we are going to be different, we are going to be going in a different direction. We are called to lead others to the way of Jesus. Our conversation is in heaven.
Well, let's go back to the text. We are told that we speak differently, but we look differently too.We look to Christ, he is our navigator, he is the bridge to the new life. Jefferson rolls eastward toward downtown, and toward the Ambasador Bridge. The bridge of Jesus connects us to God. What we have hear is a bridge with no toll. The price has been paid by Jesus. "Jesus paid it all, all to Him I owe." He bridges that seperation between sinful man and a perfect God. They want to build another bridge for the trucks down there. I don't know if that will happen. I do know that Jesus will carry me home someday. He will carry his saints to their heavenly home. Keep your eyes on Him. Let HIm direct your path. Remember last week: He leads me by the still waters.
Jefferson continues downtown and then snakes through downtown through Hart Plaza and the lower east side. the road changes there. It becomes and expressway for a bit and a four lane highway. It's transformed from an accordian road to a four lane hightway. In verse 21, scripture says that Christ will transform our bodies. From vile bodies to glorified or glorious bodies. We will have new bodies, bodies that are transformed. Bodies set for heaven. To worship and honor Him.
I used to run those marathon relays, where I would run a section of the race and teammates would finish it. One year we ran through downtown, through Mexican town, over the bridge, through Windsor and then back through the tunnel and onto Jefferson Avenue. I will be glad to run in heaven, run with the big boys, run with Jesus. Run with a glorious body. It's a great text and it's a great thought.
Jefferson continues along the eastside. Through the Pointes Jefferson is called Lakeshore as it skirts the shore of Lake St. Clair. Past St. Paul's and Grosse Point Academy. The War Memorial and the Yatch club. It continues not too far from here up the eastside to Metro Park. Metro Park was just a swamp. but various construction projects and the creation of I-94 allowed a lot of that swamp to be filled in and now we have a beautiful Metro Park. Jefferson continues out to Harrison Township where I live and along the shore up to Port Huron.
There is a lot of history all along Jefferson Avenue. Your life too is writing a history. How you live, how you grow, how you serve and where your destination will be. Run the race, finish the course, keep the faith and look for His return.
What a picture, what an history that can be yours!