Home. It’s that wonderful place that you can’t wait to get back to after an extended vacation. Even though you had a wonderful time at the beach, you tiredly exclaim, as you walk in that familiar door, “Whew! It’s good to be home…”
Home. It’s that wonderful place that conjures memories of playing football in the yard with your friends…or Star Wars on a pile of decomposing wood behind the house (I was always Han Solo :))…or building snow forts in which to hide from the inevitable barrage of snowballs from your sisters that always seemed to invariably be aimed at your head.
Home. Could be a car. A stall in a stable at a race track. A tent in Turkey Swamp State Park. For some, it could be a cardboard box.
Home. It was 2,000 square feet of dreams and a future. It was where we brought her home from the hospital. It was where we were left to pick up the pieces after…
Home is where we are now. It’s smaller, simpler. It doesn’t have nearly the closet space (much to my wife’s chagrin) we are used to. It doesn’t have as many rooms, and that seems to force us to move around each other…a lot. But that’s okay. We’re closer together for it.
God has a way of knowing what you need even before you do. Not long after Mia passed away, I was having a conversation with Him in the woods behind our old home. Though I thought it may have been one-sided at the time, how many of you know that He hears ALL of the things you have to say? I told Him that I trusted Him with everything that I have in my life. I trusted Him that Mia going Home was part of something grander than anything that I could begin to imagine. I told Him that I would follow Him wherever He wanted me to go…even if that meant giving up those things that we had grown so accustomed to: house, job, money, etc. Lesson learned: be careful what you tell Him you’re willing to do. He just may take you up on it!
Today, I was watching the movie Parental Guidance with Billy Crystal and Bette Midler. I have to say it’s a must-watch for the family. It brought back many memories of my childhood and forced me to think about the childhood I as a parent am creating for my children. When the end credits started scrolling, the song, Home by Phillip Phillips came on…and I was immediately reduced to tears. I began thinking of the difficulties I had growing up. I began thinking of the difficulties I am experiencing now. And I heard that still, small whisper telling me about home.
I looked up home in the concordance and was led to this…
“When I think of all this, I fall to my knees and pray to the Father, the Creator of everything in heaven and on earth. I pray that from His glorious, unlimited resources He will empower you with inner strength through His Spirit. Then Christ will make His home in your hearts as you trust in Him. Your roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong. And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high and how deep His love is. May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully. Then you will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God.” -Ephesians 3:14-20
As soon as I began reading the verse, I began to weep. I KNEW in my heart of hearts that this was what He wanted me to see. As I read the explanation, I could do nothing but praise His holy name…
“God’s love is total, says Paul. It reaches every corner of our experience. It is wide- it covers the breadth of our own experience, and it reaches out to the whole world. God’s love is long- it continues through the length of our lives. It is high- it rises to the heights of our celebration and elation. His love is deep- (this is where I was struck the most) it reaches to the depths of our discouragement, despair and even death. When you feel shut out or isolated, remember that you can never be lost to God’s love.”
There is a song written by Nicol Sponberg that speaks of yearning for home. For those of you who may not know, their family has experienced child-loss from SIDS. You can hear it here. The chorus says this…
“…your days here changed everything
You’re missed here and will always be
But you left here the greatest gift of all
‘Cause our hearts ache for home…”
It wasn’t until just this very instant that I had another thought about the meaning here. I’ve always been of the mind that she is referring to her son, Luke. And that may be accurate, because I can tell you that my heart aches for Home where I will again see and touch and hold and kiss my precious Baby Butterfly. But, there’s someone else whose presence here changed everything. He’s missed here, and His leaving gave us the greatest gift mankind has ever received. As a matter of fact, He just rose from the dead yesterday (albeit quite a few years ago). When you let Him make His home in your heart, as it says in Ephesians, it will complete your life.
My earthly home will never be the same again. And, though the father in me says that I would give anything to have Mia back with us, the Christian in me…the one who has Christ dwelling in his heart, says that I would much rather go to her and live in her Home…and I will do everything in my power to get there.
The version of this song I’m posting is from Selah, a group that Nicol Sponberg was a member of. How deep IS the Father’s love for us? We can’t imagine…