I sink into the lawn chair alone on the deck, head tilted back to look beyond this street where I live. It’s the end of a long day, and I’m feeling a little worn around the edges. I’ve been homesick today – missing my own culture, my family, my friends, the beauty and quiet and climate of my own land.
Night is pinned to the sky with a million stars, and Orion’s belt looms large. This same star-spangled sky is visible to you too, my family and friends, all those thousands of impossible miles away. In a few hours you may notice this very constellation. Somehow that thought eases some of the ache; it makes home seem not quite so unreachably far away.
Then a bank of clouds from somewhere off the coast of this island begins to swiftly blow in. Within minutes the stars are completely hidden from view and raindrops land on my cheeks like tears from the skies. An inexplicably deep and unreasonable sense of loss comes over me; a wave of isolation as those twinkling diamonds that linked me to home disappear one by one.
But the clouds haven’t extinguished the stars. They are no less real, no less bright because they are invisible to me. That link to home is still there, but more importantly, home, and YOU, the ones I miss, are still there, no further from me than before.
I begin to think of the greater homesickness that we share in common; not for a terrestrial land, but for our eternal one. A homesickness for glory, for our beautiful Savior, for the climate of peace and sinless perfection of our REAL home beyond those invisible stars.
Sometimes the storm clouds block my link to that home. Tossed and flurried, eyes on the waves and the upheaval in life, whether it’s earthquakes and tsunamis or negative attitudes or more laundry on top of more appointments or sickness or just no time to even think about HOME and our beautiful Savior and the cross that unites Heaven and me.
Wrapped up in the clouds of here and now, I forget where I came from. And where I’m going. But the clouds haven’t dispelled the cross; the link to HOME. It’s no less real because it’s unseen.
And the One who hung there, who spoke peace to the waves, who named every star in the night sky; He’s preparing a place for us.
One of these days we’ll be going Home.
"In My Father's house are many dwelling places; if it were not so, I would have told you; for I go to prepare a place for you...”