This time of year effects our hearts like no other, when it comes to that word, home. It can bring us to tears, remind us of silly stories, sweet memories, and dear ones now passed on.
For me, it is seems a bit harder this year. My heart has been pretty Grinch-y. We are hip-deep in home restoration and renovation, and in our upheaval we don’t have a tree, we have a table with boxes from out-of-state growing daily with the packages of love from grandparents and aunts and uncles. There is no snow on the ground, it is raining and there is a chance of tornadoes.
Home however, Home. I have realized isn’t a location, or the postcard settings some experience. It is the place where love is known, where it is safe to be yourself– no masks, no plastic, a chance to be real.
Home is where you can kick off your shoes, rummage through the fridge, and flip on the television without waiting for the host or hostess to invite you in.
The thing is, Christmas is the same thing for me. It is the sense of being welcomed, encouraged, loved, safe, and a part of something bigger than me.
Jesus left His home in Heaven to come into our messed lives and give us what many of us may have never known. A true, forever home. A Father in Heaven who loves us, a Savior who gave up everything — including His life– for us to join Him in this Forever Home.
Just like the Prodigal Son in Luke 15, who realized it was time to come home– no matter what that would look like– only to find his father running toward him to welcome him home. This is the kind of Father who is waiting to welcome us home.
God stands at the end of the driveway watching the horizon for the first sign of His lost children to come home. He will run to them, embrace them fully, welcome them in and restore them to the family they have been away from for so long.
God longs to do this with you, just like He did with me.
Come home, no matter how you are dressed, no matter how you have acted in the past, no matter what words have been said. There is restoration, there is healing, there is Hope in the Home God has prepared for you to experience.
Just come home.