Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Homesick

And they admitted that they were aliens and strangers on earth… Instead they were longing for a better country---a heavenly one. Hebrews 11:13, 16

Although the emotions of this lesson have been present frequently the past few weeks, this actually occurred almost exactly 2 years ago ;)


The last several days I’d felt pretty down. I felt so overwhelmed at the journey before us. I simply hoped tomorrow would be no worse than today. With no progress in my son’s forecast, efforts targeted maintenance of skills he still had rather than regaining. We simply dealt with each decline as it materialized. Added onto that friends who had lost a dear loved one, others dealing with infertility and miscarriages, others battling cancer, others going through divorce…. The yuck of this life had me so discouraged.

I took my despair to God in prayer since I can’t function when I’m down. I didn’t want to stay in this discouragement and hopelessness. I poured out my sadness over all of the pain and sorrow in our life and that of our friends. As I did so, the phrase “no more sorrow, no more pain” ran through my head. It reminded me of the Bible’s descriptions of heaven. With a sudden understanding, I realized, “That’s my home! My problem is, I’m homesick!” Being a follower of Christ makes me a foreigner here on earth. This is not my home. My home is heaven and the eternal presence of God where no pain, no sorrow, no sickness and disease exist. The present difficulties made me crave that restored life where I now belonged. I was homesick!

Although it helped to have a name and understanding about my emotion, that didn’t make it go away. How should I deal with it when still stuck in this life? I continued to pray and seek God through my questioning. I thought about what it meant to be homesick. I remembered back to my college days when I lived 17 hours away from home. A short break home cured the homesickness then. But how did I “get home” to cure my spiritual longing? I realized God’s presence was the key to heaven and I could pursue that now, even while here on earth.

I went out the next day and picked up a newly released worship CD by my favorite artist. I spent the next 2 days just listening to it over and over and over. Whenever I had a chance, I played it on my computer, in the car, when I went to sleep. It played almost constantly for 48 hours. Soon I found myself singing along. Slowly my focus shifted from the despair surrounding me to the greatness of the God I serve. His indescribable majesty and power, his unending compassion and faithfulness, the vast depth of his grace and mercy all became so magnified to me and imprinted upon my spirit. How could I not celebrate his awesomeness? A joy filled me that overflowed into my daily routines. Getting a “taste of home” was exactly the remedy I needed.

What will be a taste of home for you? Worship, like me? Or do favorite scriptures make your spirit soar? Try to immerse yourself in the beauty of his creation. Go sit by yourself in the stillness of your church sanctuary. Take communion to remember His great gift. Whatever takes you into his presence, do it and drink deeply! Get a thorough reminder and understanding of God’s indescribable greatness. That understanding will keep you going – for eternity!

1 comment:

  1. Hi Juli,

    This was a beautiful post. I like your perspective and will try to keep it in mind. I do often think, and it helps, that my future includes Heaven, and since Caroline is in Heaven, so my future also includes Caroline. Death seems so final, but really it's not.

    Anyway, thank you for such a beautiful,uplifting reminder of the future God has promised us! I hope and pray that all is well (a very relative term, I know) at your house.

    Love, Carol

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