We know homes to be a place of welcome. In homes, we are served homemade chicken noodle soup to fight off our cold, pancakes in bed for a special treat, fried zucchini as an homage to a shared past, and the staples: mashed potatoes and gravy, steak and broccoli, and cookies right out of the oven paired with a cold cup of milk.
Just as these foods supply us with much needed nourishment to carry out our daily tasks and activities with the energy we need, there's much in a home to offer relaxation and restoration to fuel us in our quest to tackle, create, grow, learn, organize, design, and dream. Within my home, our oversized brown "reading chair" in the corner of our sun room serves as a place to cuddle our toddler while we stop the world and rediscover the pages of a colorful book. As I look to the rocking chair, I remember the dark in which I stared into my baby's eyes, rocking and nursing and hoping I wouldn't forget the tenderness in both of us there. Still yet, in an ever practical sense of offering rest, our golden comforter, a faithful necessity in our master bedroom which folds us into the quiet of the night and wakes us in the promise of a new morning, is lovingly drawn back in place with a prayer of gratitude.
Beyond the essential needs of nourishment and restoration, a home is a place where we are called to intimacy. We love our families with all our hearts, and often in that, our vulnerability spills forth. In our homes, we hug, kiss, wrap our arms around toddlers, spouses, friends in for a visit, and family. It is here that we share the intimacy of our dreams, are willing to be completely honest, promise to one another to stay true to our values and step forth in the stronghold that it is here in our homes, the one true, safe place to faithfully, and wholly be ourselves.
After a failed attempt to teach Thomas the pattern of a knock knock joke, evidenced by his mixing the banana knock knock joke and the boo knock knock joke, with a, "nana boo who...ha ha!", Paul and I looked over at each other and smiled at the joys of parenthood.
Just then, Thomas joyously yelled, "Hooray! We're home!"
I looked past Paul's door window as we rolled into the church parking lot, staring at the great home Thomas spoke of.
To translate Thomas's proclamation, what he really meant was, "Hooray! We're at that place I love!" I'm not quite sure why this phenomenon has sprung up as of late in our son, but I feel it very endearing. In fact, I see, despite any accidental communication of sorts, quite a truth in Thomas's saying so.
This home is quite a grand home, one far surpassing the faculties one nuclear family can offer. Today, I was ever aware of the home I have been given.
I knelt in my pew and watched the incense billow up through the rays of sunshine casting themselves onto the altar. I felt the holy water seal the renewal of my baptismal promise. Tears pooled around the corners of my eyes as Ryan was confirmed in Christ's love as his mother reached out her arms to his shoulders in firm, unconditional love for him. I sang, what my feeble voice may, with joy alongside the voices of my brothers and sisters. I shook hands, offered peace, and felt calm wash over me. Most of all, greatest of all, my feet led me to The Holy Eucharist, and I said Amen.
Here is the truth of this home, a home for all. We are always welcome no matter who we have been or who we feel we are or aren't. We are always welcome to be fed, to rest our souls, and to be honest with God about the longings of our hearts, about our fears, and about our dreams. It is here, in this home, we are called to be faithfully and wholly ourselves.
|My most precious goddaughter, Scarlett!|
May you ever know that you are an integral member of God's family, that His greatest desire is for you to be wholly yourself, and that you are ever welcome in the full embrace of His home! Let your vulnerability spill forth unto Christ.