I’m not very sympathetic to homesickness. As a camp counselor, I had a knack for resisting tear-filled eyes of homesick eight-year-olds. I would simply get them a drink of water and find something new for them to do. The psychological part of me kind of wonders what I was thinking when I completely ignored these kids feelings and emotions. I worry that I may have conveyed to them that their emotions and feels aren’t important, albeit unintentional on my part. The other part of me knows that kids at camp need their counselors to maintain the very thin line between sanity and complete-I-don’t-ever-sleep-and-these-kids-whine-way-too-much-insanity. So, perhaps, my ignoring their homesickness really kept me from losing my mind–something they ultimately reaped some benefit from.
I say this because I often find myself filled with a longing I can only call homesickness. I don’t really mean the kind of homesickness where I miss my mommy and really want to sleep in the room I grew up in. (Although those things are also true, and I can’t wait to go home in a little over a week.) I’m more referring to this something in side of me that longs for peace, joy, rest, contentment and fulfillment. I sense that I’m not fully where I belong.
I’ve started reading a book called Soul Cravings. Thus far, It seems to be a a string of Christian psychological snippets. I’ve gone through the first nine little snippets all of which surround the theme of our longing for love. McManus says something interesting. He says that God is home. This struck a chord inside of me because for several years I have often had the perpetual thought inside my head “I want to go home.” I’ve never really shared this with anyone, and I have always found that thought and feeling rather odd. Yet, there’s this psychological desire for home inside of me.
It’s during this season that we celebrate the ideal of home. A home is warm when it’s cold outside. A home is welcoming; it’s a place of community and family. A home provides everything we need. A home is restful and peaceful. A home is filled with love and contentment. It seems rather fitting that so many people desire to go home for the holidays. And it also seems fitting that during frustrating, long days, I desire for this kind of idyllic space. If I think further about McManus’ comments, perhaps, I really desire for God to be fully revealed and known.
I’ve experienced glimpses of home in my life, kind of like postcard of things better yet to come. There were moments of early morning sunshine and glass waters, moments of incredible conversations and good coffee, moments of indescribable peace and joy, moments of contentment on the open road… fleeting moments that ultimately remind me that while our world has wonderful things to offer, there’s a home for me elsewhere.