Tag Archives: Home

Heading Home

“You call this a honeymoon?”  Bam! Crash!  The paper-thin walls of the “Rest for Less” Motel allowed us to clearly hear the fight in the next room. At 3:00 am!  They should have named that place the Restless Motel.  I used to like staying in motels, but it quickly got old.  Why?  They weren’t “home.”   

Home smells like coffee at 6:00 am.  It sounds like J. J. Cale or Cool Jazz on Pandora.  Home is a place of prolonged, easy hugs.  Home has a chair that fits my back.  My wife’s paintings awaken my memories.  The tools in the shop are worn to the shape of my hands.  Home is where you get homemade bread.  Motels have starched, scratchy sheets, tiny bottles of shampoo and hermetically sealed cups.  When I’m in a motel, my heart is yearning for home.

For the guy who wrote Psalm 84, the home he yearns for is God’s place.

“How lovely is your dwelling place, O Lord Almighty! My soul yearns, even faints, for the courts of the Lord; my heart and my flesh cry out for the living God.” (Psalm 84:1-2)

Maybe you had a favorite grandparent whose home felt especially like home to you.  That’s the way this psalmist felt about God.  It’s not the house so much as the warm embrace.  His life, he felt, was  a journey to God’s home where, he too, would truly be at home.  His mindset of heading home gives him strength through the ups and downs (the cheap motels) of his journey:

“Blessed are those whose strength is in you, who have set their hearts on pilgrimage [the journey home to God]. As they pass through the Valley of Baca [which means the valley of tears], they make it a place of springs; the autumn rains also cover it with pools. They go from strength to strength, till each appears before God in Zion.” (Psalm 84:5-7 – my explanatory comments)

Because his life is a journey toward home, God’s home, where he can flop down on the couch and kick his shoes off, he has a different attitude toward the occasional “valley of tears.”  He knows that those tough places along the way in life are also where the cool, refreshing springs are to be found.  Maybe it rains a lot there in the Fall, but it’s those same valleys where the swimming holes can be found.  That’s journeying “from strength to strength.”  When you are headed home, you can put up with the Rest for Less Motel.

Did you know that Jesus spoke frequently about making your home in Him?  He said,

“Remain in me [literally, abide, or make your home in Me}, and I will remain [make My home] in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.” (John 15:4 – my explanatory comments)

Let’s head for home…

Quotes: The Holy Bible : New International Version. 1996, c1984 (electronic ed.). Grand Rapids: Zondervan.

Mutual Yearning

You know the scene at the end of the chick flick, when the two lovers finally find one another.  It seems like it always happens in slow motion as they run toward one another through a field of flowers.  There is something powerful in that motif of mutual yearning finally fulfilled.

There’s a mutual yearning between us humans and the God Who created us.  We reach up; He has reached down.  Look at these two verses, one from the Old Testament and one from the New:

“One thing I ask of the Lord, this is what I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, …” (Psalm 27:4a)

“Jesus replied, “If anyone loves me, he will obey my teaching. My Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him.” (John 14:23)

We long to live with God; He comes to us and offers to make His home with us.  That’s the offer – our deepest mutual yearning perfectly fulfilled.  What’s that part about “obey my teaching”?  It begins with the simple act of trust, with saying yes to Jesus and accepting the offer.

They may not film it in slo-mo.  It might not be in flowers.  But it’s yours if you accept it.

Quotes: The Holy Bible : New International Version. 1996, c1984 (electronic ed.). Grand Rapids: Zondervan.

Stay Home

It’s been mighty cold here in Colorado.  When I come home on subzero nights, I like to fix a warm mug of tea, kick off my boots and flop down into my easy chair.  I’m home.  Once I’m settled in, I’m secure.  I don’t have to keep checking to see if this really is my home, to see if I’m really still here, or to see if it is still here.  I live here.  To use the Bible word, I “remain” here (some Bible translations say “abide”).  This is my natural place of rest, my default position, the place in which I make my home.  That’s what the word “remain” means.

John writes:

See that what you have heard from the beginning remains in you. If it does, you also will remain in the Son and in the Father.  And this is what he promised us—even eternal life.  (1 John 2:24-25)

What you have heard from the beginning…” is the simple, uncomplicated truth about Jesus.  Jesus is the Son of God, Whose death has purchased the gift of eternal life for all those who will believe it and accept it.   John says, See that this simple truth “remains” in you, that it makes its home in you.  If it does, he says, your home will be in Jesus.  You will be at home in God.

If that sounds confusing, think of what happens when you move.  At first, your new house or apartment, isn’t really “home” yet; you are still getting used to it.  Gradually, as you allow it to become “home” in you, you find yourself “at home” in it, right?  John says, as Jesus’ simple truth begins to be at home in you, you will discover that you are “at home” in God.  This two-way relationship is reflected in Jesus’ teaching:

On that day you will realize that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you. (John 14:20)

John writes to remind and reassure his brothers and sisters in Jesus because, right from the first, some people have tried to twist the message of Jesus, to complicate it and make it say what they want.  In doing so, they attempt to lead people astray. 

I am writing these things to you about those who are trying to lead you astray.  

 John says, Remember where your “home” is and stay home. By “staying home,” he says, you don’t need to worry about being led astray.  Why not?   Because you have the Holy Spirit to guide you.  He makes His home in you, and you in Him:

As for you, the anointing [the Holy Spirit] you received from him remains in you, and you do not need anyone to teach you. But as his anointing teaches you about all things and as that anointing is real, not counterfeit—just as it has taught you, remain in him.  (1 John 2:26-27)

So, wherever you go, stay home.