Cherish Your True Citizenship - The Warrior's Journey®

Cherish Your True Citizenship

Author: Chaplain, COL Scott McChrystal, USA (Ret.)

. Photo by is licensed under CC By 2.0

“But our citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ, who, by the power that enables him to bring everything under his control, will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be like his glorious body.” (Philippians 3:20-21) 

An enclave is a portion of territory within or surrounded by a larger territory whose inhabitants are culturally or ethnically distinct.  Sometimes an independent state can be an enclave – such as Vatican City and San Marino in Italy. In some rare cases there can be an enclave within an enclave, i.e. a counter-enclave. Probably, the most notable examples of this were along the India-Bangladesh border prior to June 2015. For instance, within the borders of Bangladesh were 102 enclaves of Indian territories. And within 21 of these Indian enclaves were Bangladeshi counter-enclaves. This meant that many Bangladeshis lived as strangers in their own country – surrounded by an enclave of foreigners.   

Yet at any time, those Bangladeshis could rightly say, “Though I’m a foreigner in this little enclave, beyond the borders of this strange world is a far greater world of which I am a citizen. Therefore, I will not be intimidated by the little foreign territory that surrounds me, nor will I conform to its culture. For my true country is far greater and it encompasses this little foreign land. One day, this little foreign territory that surrounds me will pass away and I will be reunited with the nation and its people to which I belong.” And that’s exactly what happened. In June 2015, all of those Indian enclaves within Bangladesh (some of which had Bangladeshi enclaves within India) disappeared. 

You know, all true believers in Jesus Christ constitute a counter-enclave within this sinful, rebellious dominion which is hostile to God and His laws. Believers band together for mutual support and encouragement. But the sinful world which surrounds them is oppressive and holds them prisoner. Christian believers constitute “the Kingdom of God” in exile within “the kingdom of sin.” And although the kingdom of sin constantly pressures us to conform to its perverse ways, we must resist this pressure. For “friendship with the world (that kingdom of sin) is hostility toward God” (James 4:4). We must never renounce our true citizenship, “for our citizenship is in heaven, from where we await a Savior, Jesus Christ” (Philippians 3:20). This petty little kingdom of sin will soon pass away. It will crumble and give way to the Kingdom of Christ, in which righteousness reigns. We will be forever freed from this world’s harassment and united forever with the household of God to which we belong. Cherish your true citizenship. 


  • Is it better to feel “at-home” in this world or to feel like a stranger in it? 
  • As God makes us more fit for heaven, do we become less fit for this world? 
  • Paul the apostle told us, “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind” (Romans 12:2). 

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