Skip to main content

I've got your number

I will admit to being homesick on more than one occasion, but nothing hit me quite as hard as that first week of Basic Training when I went into the US Army. Those first seven days away from home were torture to my psyche! I had been to Girl Scout Camp for two weeks and been a little 'lonely' for mom and dad, but somehow it just did not affect me quite like being at Boot Camp! Maybe it was because I knew there was an end to Girl Scout camp, but there was no hope of going home from Boot Camp! Those feelings we have internally when we experience homesickness are almost hard to explain, but there is an intense longing to just be safe again. To be home includes that idea of safety (at least for me) and security - - there is just something about being surrounded by what is familiar that gives us that sense of peace, security, and even a little bit of sanity.

I'm homesick—longing for your salvation; I'm waiting for your word of hope. My eyes grow heavy watching for some sign of your promise; how long must I wait for your comfort? There's smoke in my eyes—they burn and water, but I keep a steady gaze on the instructions you post. How long do I have to put up with all this? How long till you haul my tormentors into court? The arrogant godless try to throw me off track, ignorant as they are of God and his ways. Everything you command is a sure thing, but they harass me with lies. Help! They've pushed and pushed—they never let up—but I haven't relaxed my grip on your counsel. In your great love revive me so I can alertly obey your every word. (Psalm 119:81-88)

Homesick - wanting the safety and security of being comforted by our Lord and Savior - is that a real thing? When we find ourselves in an intense period of waiting, the most difficult place to be for most of us is outside of what we consider to be 'secure' or 'safe'! In those moments, all we really are seeking from God is just one word - - giving us hope and the ability to hold on a little longer until the full deliverance from what we are going through can be fully realized. It was kind of like when I was waiting for that first letter from home while I was in Basic Training. Just one letter is all I needed! Mom couldn't write until I wrote to her, though. She had no idea how to contact me, that I'd made it safe, or that her "wee lassie" was being taken care of. She must have been experiencing some of the same intensity of being apart, even though my thoughts were on how miserable I was and not really on how miserable she probably was, as well. I think we often feel the intensity of our own loss without regard for the intensity of loss God must feel when we are "apart" from him for a while.

Our spirit can get pretty low in those times. We might experience a longing to be near God, but we seem to be experiencing some type of "absence" in the sense of knowing God's comfort. We might be found "crying out", "waiting intently", and "longing" - words expressive of pretty significant "need". Ever been "holding on for dear life"? I think that must be what it means to "not relax our grip on God's counsel". The idea of "holding on" is requiring a whole lot of effort on our part and we oftentimes are feeling the "strain" of the effort of simply 'holding on'. This is the condition many of us might find ourselves in right this very moment. We might have been thrust into circumstances throughout that we did not choose. The challenges have mounted and the walls seem to be closing in. The feelings of "alone-ness" are so intense that we don't seem to see any hope or way out. We have been waiting so long for God to intervene that we just have grown weary in the waiting. We cry out, but the answer just seems to be so far away. In a word, we are "homesick" for God. We haven't experienced the intensity of his love and presence as much as we would like - we are bleary-eyed and feeling alone, not just 'lonely', but alone.

Why do we experience homesickness in the first place? Isn't it because we have experienced the warmth and love of "being at home"? We long for what we know to be possible! Here's the short answer: God never leaves! He is still right here! We just need to re-establish the contact! It wasn't until I wrote to Mom that she could write to me - the feelings of intense "alone-ness" were really resolved when I established the "connection". Maybe this is the week we examine where we are with establishing and maintaining "contact" with the one who cares so deeply for us. In those "contacts" we are renewed, re-energized, and re-vitalized for the challenges that lay ahead. "Dial in"! You won't be sorry you did! Just sayin!


Popular posts from this blog

What did obedience cost Mary and Joseph?

As we have looked at the birth of Christ, we have considered the fact he was born of a virgin, with an earthly father so willing to honor God with his life that he married a woman who was already pregnant.  In that day and time, a very taboo thing.  We also saw how the mother of Christ was chosen by God and given the dramatic news that she would carry the Son of God.  Imagine her awe, but also see her tremendous amount of fear as she would have received this announcement, knowing all she knew about the time in which she lived about how a woman out of wedlock showing up pregnant would be treated.  We also explored the lowly birth of Jesus in a stable of sorts, surrounded by animals, visited by shepherds, and then honored by magi from afar.  The announcement of his birth was by angels - start to finish.  Mary heard from an angel (a messenger from God), while Joseph was set at ease by a messenger from God on another occasion - assuring him the thing he was about to do in marrying Mary wa

The bobby pin in the electrical socket does what???

Avoidance is the act of staying away from something - usually because it brings some kind of negative effect into your life.  For example, if you are a diabetic, you avoid the intake of high quantities of simple sugars because they bring the negative effect of elevating your blood glucose to unhealthy levels.  If you were like me as a kid, listening to mom and dad tell you the electrical outlets were actually dangerous didn't matter all that much until you put the bobby pin into the tiny slots and felt that jolt of electric current course through your body! At that point, you recognized electricity as having a "dangerous" side to it - it produces negative effects when embraced in a wrong manner.  Both of these are good things, when used correctly.  Sugar has a benefit of producing energy within our cells, but an over-abundance of it will have a bad effect.  Electricity lights our path and keeps us warm on cold nights, but not contained as it should be and it can produce

Scrubbed Up and Ready to Go!

Have you ever considered just how 'clean' your hands really are? In nursing school, I remember this exercise we did where we rubbed hand lotion on our hands, then were told to go scrub them to practice a good handwashing technique. Most of us were going the extra mile by scrubbing back and front, in between the fingers and then even up above the wrist area. Surely our hands were clean, right? We came back to the room for the 'inspection' of our handwashing jobs only to find our instructor had turned the lights off, had a black light set up, and inspected our hands under that glowing beast! Guess what else 'glowed'? Our hands! The lotion was 'laced' with this 'dust' that illuminates under the black light, allowing each of us to see the specific areas around cuticles, under nails, and even here and there on our hands that got totally missed by our good 'handwashing' technique! What we thought was clean really wasn't clean at all. Clean