Home is Where the Heart Is
Home is Where We Prepare for God’s Purposes
I remember standing in the kitchen of our basement apartment on New Hampshire Avenue washing dishes. It was a small, cozy, 1 bedroom, 1 bathroom apartment. It had older wood paneling and a refrigerator from the 1950’s. We spent almost 2 years there and we believe it truly was a “nest” for ministry training 101. Although, we both had pretty “good” jobs right after graduating college and ministry degrees we prayerfully stepped away from those jobs to serve in our local church and use our gifts of creating, music and worship trusting God to provide for our needs.
He did so, mainly through the generosity of family, friends and sometimes strangers. We kept a log of it in a journal and called it “The Book of Faith”. Those were humbling times, but we know they were times of foundation in our marriage. We hadn’t been married long, but even then I knew there were going to be some (ahem) adventures of faith in our future.
As I washed the dishes in that apartment I imagined doing the same thing in another country. We were already praying, dreaming and working towards life in Africa. At that time I didn’t know that Africa would be life in Haiti first, but I was open and willing to the possibilities. To me, hand washing those dishes with no “dishwasher” in the apartment seemed like such a dreamy preparation for daily life in another culture.
Home is Where We Grow
Fast forward a few years, and we are in an apartment in the States again. This time in Charleston, South Carolina and we have a dishwasher for the first time in a long time. “They’rrrrre GRRRRReAT!” (In my Tony the Tiger voice) (pun intended).
Now as I wash dishes here, I have a seriously deep level of gratitude and delight in the efficiency I get to partake in. I mean I load that thing with dishes and it’s a-mazing! I know it’s silly, but after over a year of living in Haiti, house chores in America aren’t as stressful as they once were. And I don’t say that to make any Americans feel bad who are reading this. That’s honestly not really my thing, intentionally making people feel bad. Now, unintentionally…well I have stuck my foot in my mouth a few times….But, I’m just sharing from the heart.
In between the apartment on New Hampshire Ave and this apartment, we have had more “homes” than I would have ever imagined when we first got married. Each one has been unique, but there is always a certain amount of time it takes to really feel like “home”. I’m not sure if it’s nostalgia from being a little girl, but curling up on the couch in my pj’s makes me feel like I’m home. Drinking a cup of tea on my bed feels like home. Seeing everything put in order and clean says home. Reading a book or listening to music feels like home. Having friends or family over for a meal is home.
Home is Where the Holy Spirit Teaches Us
And this is why I wrote this post and felt like a week focused on home was where the Spirit was leading me. Because there is that mixture of peace, relief, security, satisfaction, and joy when we are “home”.
I’ve felt it in apartments, townhouses, large houses, and small houses. I’ve felt it in the U.S. and in Haiti. I shared this quote earlier in the week about what I believe the Spirit was speaking to me about home.
“Home is being in the space that God has placed us for the purposes of Jesus Christ with His Holy Spirit filling us and that space with the people He’s divinely appointed us to at a certain point in time.”
Home is in the Present
I’ve had times where I longed for “homes” of the past with loved ones of the past. Especially during difficulties of the present. But, the reminder of that definition of home is a great encouragement to me and I hope to you also.
Home is in the Future for Eternity With Jesus
That sigh of relief we feel at home points to our eternal home. That warm and cozy feeling we get is but a shadow of the forever “sigh of relief” we will experience in God’s Glorious Home.
John 14:1-3 (AMP) “Do not let your heart be troubled (afraid, cowardly). Believe [confidently] in God and trust in Him, [have faith, hold on to it, rely on it, keep going and] believe also in Me. In My Father’s house are many dwelling places. If it were not so, I would have told you, because I am going there to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back again and I will take you to Myself, so that where I am you may be also.
Jesus is Our Home
It’s like Jesus knew the disciples would need reassurance after He left. I love that the title of this passage is Jesus Comforts the Disciples. I imagine they felt “at home” with their Master, Savior and Friend. They were together through a lot of joys, miracles and sorrows.
Jesus knew they would need encouragement and I believe He knows we need it too. Maybe you’re struggling at home right now or longing for a home in the future or one from the past.
Then this is for you and for me. We can always snuggle up with Jesus. Seriously. Get away and tell Him what hurts. He can heal it. Tell Him what you need. He can provide it. He is home.
What does home mean to you? How does knowing Jesus is preparing a home for us give you hope in present circumstances?
Talk to me in the comments below!
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Stay Radiant, Stay Beautiful!