Walter and I are so excited to be starting this blog together. It took us a couple of tries before we ended up with The Happy Exiles. We threw words around like: grace, joy, redeemed, and tried to find ways to turn it into a title without it being too cheesy or too Christian-y. We ended up with a ridiculous amount of two-to-three word expressions that were all okay, but sounded silly in some way.
Walter really liked the word “exiles,” which in my opinion, holds such a negative connotation; however, it does hold some truth about who we are as people who are not yet “home”.
Before we start typing away, we would like to explain why we called ourselves The Happy Exiles.
An exile is someone who is far away from home. It’s easy for me to feel this way because I am not a Philly native. I was born and raised in the Philippines and left for the US when I went away for college. After graduating, I landed a job at a health insurance company in Wayne, PA where I still currently work.
Walter has lived in Philly all his life, but he is as much of an exile as I am. You see, Walter and I are not “home,” in the truest sense of the word. We believe that no one is home. Not really. We may love the place we live with our whole heart (and trust me, we love Philadelphia), but at the end of the day, we were designed for a different place.
In Christianity, we believe that we were created to be with God in heaven. However, because man chose sin over God, we disrupted our relationship with our holy and perfect Father and were exiled from Heaven. Since the fall, every man, woman and child has been subjected to a broken world, filled with pain, hurt and suffering. All of this to say that although we love this Earth, we are not home yet. As a result, we travel light, remembering that where we are is temporary, but where we are headed is eternal.
Therefore, here we are now – living as exiles. Why are we happy, you ask?
As most of you know, exiles are typically unhappy. When you first think of an exile, you imagine a person who has been unwillingly removed from their home, and since home is where the heart is, they have been removed from the things that they know and love. But this is where the analogy starts to fall apart for us. Most importantly, we are happy because despite our exile status, we have been redeemed. We have an unshakable hope that we will one day call heaven home. We are happy because we may be exiles, but the time we spend away from home has a purpose, we truly are here for a reason. God has called us to participate in his redeeming work in the here and now, and he has created an entire world for us to work and keep. Although we are sojourners away from our eternal “forever home,” we still put down roots where we are at. We are happy because there is so much to see, experience, and love by God’s grace here on this Earth.
We hope that as we share our sights and experiences with you, that you might read and be inspired. We hope that through this blog, we might be able to point you to Jesus in the day-to-day. Even if religion isn’t really your thing, we still hope that you can read our blog and be encouraged that we are two people who strive to love the world and its people. These words are a gift from us to you.
Thank you so much for reading! We can’t wait to journey through life with you.
– P + W