Friday, April 5, 2019
For much of my adult life I have lived far from my parents and the place where I grew up, so I have become accustomed to the terms “home” = where I currently live and “home home” = my parent’s house where I grew up. For the past two years, the concept of home has stretched further as I now have a “home” on the missions field in Papua New Guinea as well as a “home” country. Thus, going “home” has become complicated. It seems that I have become a wanderer, with many different mooring points around the world. In some ways the mobility brings freedom as I accumulate less clutter and find that places or possessions aren’t as important as relationships. On the other hand, the long distances and separation from friends makes maintaining relationships harder and more painful as I always seem to be saying hello and goodbye in the same breathe. Constant transition. That is the missionary life, always hovering between here and there.
Four weeks ago, I returned to my “home base”, my parent’s house in California. Shortly thereafter, I felt the familiarity of being “home” when I visited my old roommate in Syracuse, NY, the last place I lived before moving abroad. As I travelled from Wisconsin to Florida and everywhere in between, I reconnected with many old friends and met many more new ones. During that time I realized that even though “home” has become a transient entity, my “family” continues to grow and expand, stretching around the world. Just as Jesus said, “Truly I tell you, no one who has left home or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or fields for me and the gospel, will fail to receive a hundred times as much in this present age: homes, brothers, sisters, mothers, children and fields...” (Mark 10:29-30). He never promised that it would be easy, but by leaving my home and my family I have found so many more homes and brothers, sisters, mothers, fathers, nieces and nephews than I ever could have imagined. And as long as I’m with family, I am home.
Posted by Sheryl MD at 5:03 PM