My youngest — a pale-skinned, freckled brunette — ran up to a food booth at an International festival in St. Paul, Minnesota. The banner over the booth clearly read “African American.” Lucy grinned and said to the women cooking, “African American, like me!”
Lucy was born in our host country and considers herself African. My older two vacillate between feeling American and feeling African, and this week my son told me he spends most of his life as an alien. He just learned the political meaning of the word.
I could spend a lifetime trying to create the illusion of home for my transitory family. I could talk them through passport identity, parents’ home country identity, Third Culture Kid identity. And we do have those conversations, but they are not the focal point. Instead, I need to emphasize their eternal identity.
Ephesians 2:19, a precious verse for expatriates, says, “You are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God . . . Christ Jesus himself being the cornerstone.”
This is the citizenship, the home, and the community that is of ultimate importance, and with Christ as the cornerstone, it is gloriously unshakeable. Visas won’t have to be applied for or passports renewed.