Home Sweet Home
Recently, while contemplating another move, the question of “Won’t you miss this house?” got me thinking about how many times I have been asked that in my almost 30 years of marriage. Through the years we have lived in a trailer, an apartment, a log house, a brand new house and a 100 year old house. The challenge of renovating, decorating and constantly rearranging is one of those things in life that brings me joy and I think each place has reflected that. Finding a bargain on just the right piece of furniture or that perfect throw rug really makes my day! So why, when I enjoy all this so much, do I feel detached from it and able to honestly answer the above question with a “no”? It is because it is not about the house but about the home. Home is where our family is. Home is where we laugh and cry and eat and sleep and work and do nothing and argue and make up and feel safe. And even when our children are grown and making homes of their own they still know that this is a place they are welcome at any time of day or night. We all know that feeling of coming back from a trip and knowing there is truly “no place like home”. There is a feeling of contentment that simply is not to be found anywhere else.
I think God has designed us with this desire for home because we are made in His image; He also desires a home. But are we confusing the house with the home? After all, if heaven is His throne and earth is His footstool where do we suppose there is a house that can contain Him anyway? Maybe these houses that we call “church” are just so many buildings to Him; no different than a school or a hospital or a superstore. Is He finding His home? That place where His family is; where brothers and sisters can laugh and cry and even have their differences but nevertheless feel safe. Where no matter how far they may roam they know where home is; a place where love rules. How about a place where He can rest? There are lots of little “houses” all claiming to be His but I think He is still looking and wondering why we do not understand that it is a “home” He is wanting. A place where our Father is comfortable. A place where we as His children discover that we are just part of a vast, worldwide family for whom Christ shed His blood; so vast that no building could possibly contain us. We say the church is the people not the building, but do we truly believe that? Our love and reverence for our Father needs to be greater than our misguided loyalties to a building or even to our brothers and sisters. This home is all about Him finding a resting place. And when He does we will find ours as well.
Come to think of it, I have never seen a cross-stitched plaque on anyone’s wall that reads, “House Sweet House”. It is always “Home Sweet Home”.