Home Sweet Home

     Looking at Grandpa and Grandma’s wall as a child, I spied a sampler.  Sounding out the words, I read – Home Sweet Home.  I agreed because ‘sweet’ meant dessert to me. And where could a person get the best dessert?  As I grew up, my idea of Home Sweet Home changed and broadened in meaning.
     I learned Home is a place to find regular meals, a place to sleep, a closet for belongings and rules to obey and chores to do.  It is also a place of love, laughter, love, and hugs. The most important ingredient is forgiveness and belonging. 
     Home Sweet Home changed meaning when I left for college. It meant an empty feeling in the pit of my stomach, for I would not be able to return for six weeks because of financial reasons. I remembered all home meant to me.  Later, one of our sons described homesickness to me.  Being on your own is looking at the four walls of your room and wondering what is going on at home. 
     One of the important decisions in life is choosing a mate and making a home together.  It takes a lifetime to meld two lives into one in a spiritual way that makes Home, a Sweet Home.  After sixty-four years, I understand why it takes this long.
     As our children left, one by one, I realized how quickly each stage and phase passed by.  Each child is missed, and I wonder if they felt the same way  I did.  Enjoying the excitement of being on your own, and yet missing the blessings of home. I remember the laughter and fun around the table each evening as our children were teens.  They each left an emptiness around the table and our lives.
     The emptiness grew deeper when my dear husband and I began our 64th year of marriage apart.  My dear husband is currently residing in a Memory Care Facility after four years together in a new home, a home decorated in memories of children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren.  Home, Sweet Memories.  Is this all there is? For three years I heard my husband plead, I want to go home. Now he has no memory of home.
     Suddenly I remember a visit to Millie in a nursing home. I heard her say over and over, I want to go back home my two sons built for me. Considering her health, I knew she would soon go to her heavenly home.  A memory interrupted my reverie.  I am six years old, and my parents moved to a new home while I was in school. The instructions were to walk home, watching for the water tower for direction.  I walked and walked, it was lunch hour and my legs were tired and I wondered which was my street.  Finally, I found home!  Such a blessed moment!  It was there, I belonged. A different place, but Mom’s arms meant home.
     When I found my home, I rejoiced.  Later I found the scripture from John 14:1-4, it soon became my life scripture.
“Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me. In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also. And where I go you know, and the way you know.”
     In later years, I found the ‘map’ to our Heavenly Sweet Home in John 14:6.  Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.
      This same Jesus left His Heavenly Home because He loves us so.  He came to save us by dying on the cross.  Then His Heavenly Father raised Him up from the grave and death.  He lives again.  This same Jesus Matthew 8:20 writes, But Jesus replied, “Foxes have dens to live in, and birds have nests, but the Son of Man has no place even to lay his head.” 
     What does that mean?  Earth is not our home forever. We were created to be with Jesus in Heaven. We were made in the image of God, chosen before the beginning of time and God implanted eternity in our hearts.
     Home, Sweet Home on earth is just a mini-taste of the glories to come.
     For this world is not our permanent home; we are looking forward to a home yet to come. Hebrews 13:14
     Christ suffered for our sins once for all time. He never sinned, but he died for sinners to bring you safely home to God. He suffered physical death, but he was raised to life in the Spirit. I Peter 3:18
     What is Home, Sweet Home for you?  For me it is the anticipation of a Reunion of Mammoth Proportions.  Time to go Home and rejoice and praise God for our inheritance through His Son, Jesus Christ to live forever.
     So we are always confident, knowing that while we are at home in the body we are absent from the Lord.  For we walk by faith, not by sight. 2 Corinthians 5:6-7
     We know that God, who raised the Lord Jesus, will also raise us with Jesus and present us to himself together with you. 2 Corinthians 4:14
     When I see rain, I think, Living Water.  When I see a rainbow, I know God’s promises are true.  When I see a child smile, I think of the purity of the Lamb. As I see seasons change I think of our steadfast God.  As I see the lovely hues God paints his creation I think of the varieties of design and color with which God will adorn our new Home, Heaven.
     We walk in two worlds when we belong to Jesus.  We know this isn’t all there is, we know This world is not my home, I’m just a-passing through. My treasures are laid up, Somewhere beyond the blue.
      John, author of Revelations through the inspiration of God, reveals some of Heaven to us in all its awesomeness.  Oh, to see Heaven as John did and write: He who is the faithful witness to all these things says, “Yes, I am coming soon!” Amen! Come, Lord Jesus! Revelation 22:20
     Lyrics to a favorite song begins, “Goin’ Home, I’m just goin’ home. Quiet-like, some still day, I’m just goin’ home!”

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