Home. That is my word for 2011. For those of you who have followed our story, you know that I picked it because I needed to learn what ‘home’ was outside of a settled physical place because well, I would not have one for the majority of the year.
I remember picking this word and just looking at this great beyond of transition that was so overwhelming I would wake up in the mornings or after an afternoon nap and just say, ‘is this really happening?’
The year began with the preliminary stages of packing up our house in Florida. That quickly escalated into our transition out of life and ministry in Orlando and into eating breathing packing or travelling to raise support or me packing and my husband travelling and many friends helping!
Then came that night in early June when we said goodbye to the home and life that had been the only one our kids had known or we had known as a family. We packed the things we wanted to keep and send overseas into a truck where they were then transported to Newark, NJ and are in storage until we know when we will be in Hungary can send them!
Next, we travelled with our van full of the rest of our worldly possessions and headed across the country to Colorado for our overseas training. We had a wonderful temporary home there and an even more amazing community but it went so quickly and soon we were packing up again.
We took a week and travelled back to our home in Pennsylvania stopping in Nebraska, Illinois, Ohio and Western Pennsylvania before we rolled into our hometown north of Philadelphia. We moved in with some friends and that was our ‘housing plan’ hoping that we would soon be moving overseas.
However, in the perfect timing of God we are at four months and counting here in PA. We moved three times in two months or five times in four months and I felt like ALL of my energy was spent simply trying to stay sane;}
But, I am learning that there has been oh, so much more! And it really does center around what Home really is and how I have been changed through meditating on this word in a year like this.
I am going to spend the Tuesdays in December reflecting on what I have learned about Home. And I am going to invite you into some scenes of my life, my story, through pictures I took during what has become one of the most stable things in my life :: a daily walk.
As I snapped the pictures, I was amazed that this place so close to the physical homes I grew up in provided a set of images that tell my story so well.
For example, the rustic barn picture above reminds me of where my story began, on a farm, a dairy farm, to be exact.
I won’t give away the ending, but I will tell you that I began these months at ‘home’ lamenting that none of my family lives here and really dreading being in a place that seemed to hold so little of home anymore.
However, in that grief of what I’ve lost, of what I have kept losing in this fragmented year of transition with more to come, I’ve found the elements of home that can never be taken away.
I hope you will join me in this series and perhaps reflect yourself on this word ‘home’ that is so central to all of our lives.