Some thoughts from Jessie on 'Home'
"Hey, where do you call home?" "Do you chill in a mud hut?" "Do elephants give you a lift to work?" "Oh, and I suppose lions are your neighbors?" Man, I've lost count of how many times I've been hit with these questions while growing up. But you know what? The toughest one for me was the one about home. Trying to figure out home wasn't a piece of cake. For me, home was where the heart is, and the heart was all about the people. It's a simple answer, but it seems like folks have a hard time wrapping their heads around it.
As a kid, I was as untamed as a wild bird. I thrived on adventure – roaming free in the great outdoors. Picture this: hanging with my Kenyan pals, leaping over fences for a game, and taking those long bike spins across the African plains. Ah, those were the days. But then, things shifted. Growing up meant trading in the bike rides for boarding school. Suddenly, I was thrown into a whole new game – one of competition and social dynamics that I'd barely scratched the surface of while being homeschooled. Still, adapting wasn't a biggie for me. I embraced the new places and cultures. I mean, come on, making the most of life away from family and the home I knew was a no-brainer.
I jumped into every sports team I could find and soaked up the social scene at boarding school. I wasn't the textbook type, but give me a field and friends, and I was golden. Graduation day hit, and while it was sweet to finally toss that cap, there was this bittersweet aftertaste. Saying goodbye to the life I'd built, the people I'd grown close to – it all slipped through my fingers. It was like the grand finale to an epic show, and then the lights went out. The part that stung the most? No guarantees about seeing those awesome friends again. The place that had shaped my teen years was now just a highlight reel in my memory bank. I yearned for the camaraderie of sports and those close-knit friendships. I knew I had to roll up my sleeves and dive back into the game to find them again. Tough times, no doubt. But through all that struggle, God was my steadfast ally, hauling me through. I clung to the notion that His plans were bigger and better than my own, His ways beyond my understanding. Feeling alone was part of the package, and I had to grapple with deep grief. The sadness over things never being the same lingered, but deep down, I had this rock-solid belief that brighter days were lurking, as long as I followed the playbook set out in the Good Book.
Fast forward to today, and here I am, a mom to four amazing kids, raising them in the mission field. Now, the question about home pops up again and again. No matter where we roam on this globe, the friends we make, the beds we crash in, there's one constant: we're together, a tight- knit crew. Our hearts find peace and happiness because we're where we're supposed to be – with the ones we love. It's a feeling of tranquility knowing that we're cradled in the hands of our Father, and His plans? Always top-notch.
But here's the kicker: the real home, the true-blue one, isn't grounded in these fleeting moments. We're more like travelers passing through, with our sights set on an eternal destination. Yep, our ultimate abode is with Jesus, and that's where we'll find our forever place to kick back and relax.
Across the globe, in lands we roam,
One truth endures, a constant home.
In God's embrace, we find our place,
His plans unfold with endless grace.