(by Amy Lien)
Last night all the different body parts on my body said, "Stop! No more! We want sleep!" (Namely my the pounding in my head) So, I found myself walking back to the flat (apartment) and speeding past the women and men, some of them clients of the mission, who were asking for money. I felt weary and tired and spent.
After falling into bed, I realized that my body was getting sick and needed a solid rest. I called Mike and told him that I could not make it for the evening meal.
I am glad that God translates our feeble whimpers. Here, unable to turn my longings into words, I knew I was talking with my God.
"How long, Lord?
"It sure does feel like plodding along.
I know you redeem ALL things.
These memories poke and prod at me.
Are you enough?
HOME. I want. I need.
Where is this taking us?"
I can't begin to tell you all the thoughts I had. Yet, here in the jumbly mess of these thoughts, He remained and spoke. It came in the form of me checking my Instagram account and finding that a friend (she is also the daughter of a close friend of mine) had posted a picture of me and her father, Alex, who recently died. In the photo we had re-united after not seeing each other for a long while; he had grabbed me into a big hug, his eyes closed with a face of such love and peace and knowing that it said that we were "home." Alex was someone who "got me." When I was at university (college) in Tennessee, he drove his family and me back there from Mississippi to help me set up my apartment which was off-campus. He turned it into a family vacation. I had no furniture and no tools to set up my apartment—and he had both. He rented a U-haul and got a couch and chairs and a kitchen table and lastly a tool box (which he filled up) and told me that "Every woman needs a full set of tools." He single-handedly set up my apartment and set up a "home" for me.
Since then, I have had many peoples' help in setting up places of refuge or "homes" for me. They have come in the form of people opening up their own homes to me for a time. I have always longed for home. Even when I have had a place with four walls and a roof. Consistently, in every place, God has told me that He alone IS home. Over time, the revelation God has given to me about home has traveled the longest distance that any human can travel—the twelve inches it takes to get from my head to my heart.
Many people will say that we are not home yet. Our home is when we "fall asleep" or die and see our Saviour face-to-face. That is true (as Hebrews talks about that) and yet we have been given a home that far outweighs anything on this earth. It is now. It is in Jesus. He is our bread and our living water. He is alive and well and we can daily come to Him for real bread. Real water. In contrast, we can KNOW in our knower how good He really is. "Oh, taste and see that the Lord is good." When I come to this table and eat, I am home. I am in this world but not of it. I am home now. My source is not the world, but in something that remains even after I die—Jesus.
We have a home, that has not been set up by human hands, but rather by the maker and giver of all things that are good and right.
Let us set our eyes on things above and not on earthly things, beloved; let us grab hold of what has been set before us and not lose hope. Home is guiding us. And even though we may stumble, we will never hurl headlong, for He holds our right hand.
Alex is home now with the Father and yet he was home even when we embraced back when that photo was taken. Jesus was and IS so near. That picture and expression spoke about what I felt when I was near Alex—when I was near anyone who was or is eating from the Source. It was a recognition of what IS. Home is among us, for He is the head and we are His body.