There is an adventurer inside me. One who loves to tackle a new city, a new routine. New is my friend, my ally against monotony. Of course there is something to be said for familiarity, but I love knowing there are places to explore, unknown to me and my family. There’s a part of me that truly enjoys the unfamiliar. The unexplored. The new.
“Home” has been a vague term for us the past almost 5 years. We moved east and home became a place we’d vacation to, to visit family and friends we’d left behind. But then we’d also return “home” after the vacation to the surrogate family and friends God had given us among our church and neighborhood. Some days we felt as if we had two homes. Some days it felt as if we had none. We left both of those homes in early 2017 at the call of the Lord and moved west, but our family has endured a minor bit of upheaval in the past year, and we are now 28 days from returning HOME. The place from which we came.
We are going back to where there lays no untrodden path. Places on campus have all been long-since discovered. Memories are now years-old. Coffee shops, stores, parks and restaurants, while they have changed some in the past 10+ years, still line the same familiar streets and make up the memory-laden geography of the city of our college years.
For most, this would be a time of rejoicing. And we are too. We truly love home. For us the memories and family members and friends have been dearly missed, and we are so thankful to be returning. But for part of this adventure-loving woman, returning home is also marked with a touch of sadness. The maps have all been laid clear in my heart and there seems to be no more “new” to discover.
I love new places, and while I learn to love again an old place, I know the Lord will bring new people and he will help us continually make room for them in our family’s life. With each new school-year, the unfamiliar faces with their untold stories and unknown histories will be our adventure. We may walk the same streets and drink the same coffee day in and day out, but we will trust the Lord in the old, just as much as in the new. He brought my husband and me together in this place, and for reasons unknown to many but him, he is bringing us home.
And we are thankful.
**Also, this article was extremely helpful for me in identify the goodness of being home.
“We’ve learned our lesson: there’s nothing out there that can’t be found here. There is no beauty or brokenness that exists out there that can’t be loved or combated right here. We believe we’ve been prepared and called to live in this community, and until God providentially changes that, we’ll stay.
Because this is the deeper truth about place: no earthly place can fill what is ultimately a longing for a heavenly one. We can stay here because we know we’ll never find our final home on this earth.” –Hannah Anderson