when home is hard to… define

If you ever want to get good and sad, do a search in your iTunes for the word “home.” I trimmed the playlist to 50, but that’s 3:30:06 worth of accompaniment for where I’m not.

I’ve got quite the assortment – from the Peasall Sisters to Coheed and Cambria, from Matthew Mayfield to Waterdeep and from Eliza Doolittle to Trent Dabbs, from Mark Scibila to Iron & Wine and Mates of State to Sarah Jarosz. Simon & Garfunkel even make an appearance, followed by Phil Wickham and William Fitzsimmons.

And they are all singing, desperate and hopeful, about home.

I can’t really explain it, but these melodies rustle up a restlessness that says, “You’re not home in this moment” and it doesn’t even matter where my feet are currently planted. I could be standing in the middle of my childhood home or lounging in one of 10 places I’ve called “home” since then and it wouldn’t matter. There’s something distinctly not home-y about life and there are reasons to be discontent about it.

Come on, join in with me.
Throw your discontent in my kettle and we’ll stir us up some comfort food.

I’m not where I thought I would be at 27…
I really wish I had the kind of friends who…
It seems like nobody really knows me around here…
My laundry does not have the “this definitely came from my house” smell…
I can manage to go from Monday – Friday completely anonymous, if I want…
If only I could get away and have some time to think…
I would feel at home if I was a “regular” at the coffee shop…
Home feels more like a tractor when I’m at an office desk and more like an office desk when I’m in a tractor…

I don’t know what makes where you are not home, but it’s a funny science – this discontent. I think I realized as my heart beat along with the rhythm of these tunes that I need to add home and here and there to the list of “things to hold loosely.”

When we are tempted into discontent about the place we find our two feet (for all the pages of reasons we rush to number), it’s okay to be honest. It’s okay to sing sad songs about home and speak our discontent into the unforgiving air.

But discontent will become our sin when we hold too tightly and hope too strongly for what we don’t have…. then discontent becomes a bitter root or a seed of jealousy. Our comfort in the most desperate, sojourning moments is that our always home is not attached to location or city or nation.

In those kind of moments – when I think about all the places I am not – I breathe deep and trust that God is.

If you need to speak your wandering, sojourning spirit into the unforgiving air today, here are some tunes. But, please, don’t hold too tightly or hope too strongly for what you don’t have.

You have an invitation to always home.

Here is the one you listen to when you realize where you are always home.

let LOVE fly like cRaZy

wherever your feet are planted in this moment

2 thoughts on “when home is hard to… define

  1. Im a friend of Vinces here at Baylor, and I wanted to let you know that I admire your incredible writing talent. I also appreciate the time, and thought you put into this blog to ultimately spread the love of Christ. I will quote my text to Vince about your blog to give you a more realistic feel for what I am trying to say: “Wow she is a talented writer, I can’t imagine being able to transform those thoughts in my head to that kind of sexiness on paper” Thanks again!

    1. Ben,
      Hey, thanks for the encouragement. I love to write, so the Lord adds a double blessing when someone else loves to read it. I hope Baylor is being kind to you – be kind to Texas for me, please!
      Keep on keeping on,

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