For those who say such things declare plainly that they seek a homeland. - Hebrews 11:14
I am navigationally challenged, so I like having a GPS to help keep me from getting lost. But I read about a Wisconsin motorist who actually ended up on a snowmobile trail because her GPS led her in the wrong direction. She ended up stuck in the snow and had to call 911. A deputy who responded to the call said, "People shouldn't believe everything those things tell you."
A GPS can fail us. But that isn't the case with the sophisticated homing instinct God has given to certain birds. Their built-in navigational systems are probably better than our latest technology. The Manx Shearwater, for example, nests off of the coast of Wales and has an amazing homing instinct. Scientists tagged and released a number of these birds at different points around the globe to see whether they could find their way back home. In just 12 days, all the birds made their way back. One bird in particular made it all the way from Boston, traveling 250 miles a day from a place it had never been to get back home. Now that is what you call a homing instinct.
God has placed a homing instinct within you and I as well, and I believe it is a homesickness for heaven. We long for a place we have never been before. We are prewired that way. The Bible tells us that God has put eternity in our hearts (see Ecclesiastes 3:11).
Heaven is the real thing that we long for. Heaven is not an imitation of Earth, but it is really the other way around. Earth is the copy, the temporary dwelling place. Heaven is the real deal, the eternal dwelling place of every follower of Jesus Christ. It is the place we long for, because it is our future home.