Welcome to Roc In Exile!  First, I should explain the name.  “Roc” is not a typo: I didn’t forget the “K”.  Back home as a teen, my nick name was Rocky.  Some of my best friends still call me “Roc” for short and it’s how I identify myself in relationship with them. 

To be in exile is the condition of living away from one’s own home or nation (sometimes forcibly).  In the Old Testament, Israel is said to be in exile during their Babylonian captivity.  However, the Apostle Peter also speaks of New Testament believers as exiles when he writes “Conduct yourselves with fear throughout the time of your exile” (1Peter 1:17).  So, “In exile”, refers to all followers of Christ in relationship to the world we live in.  

I was hesitant to use the phrase “In Exile” as a blog title, because of so many unpleasent connotations associated with the word “exile”.  Many see it as a word or condition of victimization.  But I see it as a heroic condition.  A call to mission.  It describes the condition of a people who know that they are royalty, but who also realize that just like The One they follow, their “…kingdom is not of this world,” and they live accordingly.  They’re on a mission, and as ambassadors of reconciliation they extend that kingdom of love and grace to others, inviting them to share abundant life as a child of the King. 

Being in exile one can’t help but wrestle; with God, man, and even the forces of darkness (yeah, I believe in that sorta thing).  We all struggle with the way things are, as opposed to the way things are supposed to be.  We all have desires and aspirations, but also many struggles and even failures that come with living life on this side of eternity.  We live life in the tension of the “already/not yet” Kingdom to come.  But like those who came before us, as exiles we also live in hope: “All these people died still believing what God had promised them. They did not receive what was promised, but they saw it all from a distance and welcomed it. They agreed that they were foreigners and nomads (exiles) here on earth.”  Hebrews 11:13.  

I won’t pretend to be a perfect guide on this sojourn, but I will make some observations, ask some questions, share my perspective, and hopefully offer some insights on issues pertaining to Faith, [G]Race, and Culture from the vantage point of a Resident Alien.  I hope you’ll join me on the journey by offering your own comments and insights.  The more the merrier! 

Ron “Roc” McClelland