Like so many others, I am relieved to be done with the year 2017. Unlike many others, I am struggling to articulate exactly why. There have been some disappointments this year both for me personally and for how I would like the world to be, but overall it wasn't a bad year for me in my own little sphere of circumstances and situations. We moved across the country. The Hubs started a job that he really likes, and which I like because he likes it and for the fact that he is home each evening and weekend and holiday. I am in the process of cultivating friendships. We have a found a church that is gospel-focused. There I am reminded each week of the bigger story of creation, fall, redemption, restoration, my place in that story, and God's sovereignty in it all. We had a house full of new friends for Bug's seventh birthday, and for that I am so thankful. And in a couple of weeks we will purchase a home where, Lord willing, we will spend the remainder of our boys' childhoods.
We are already home here in Tucson, but it doesn't quite feel completely like home yet. Maybe these seasons of adjusting, of adapting, and even of being in escrow are symbolic of the state of my soul. The kingdom of God is already and not yet. The state of my soul is purchased, and yet I am still working out my salvation with fear and trembling. The world is not my home, and yet someday, at the renewal of all things, it will be my forever home.
I would like to say that after a year of focusing on the word and a year of settling into a new home, a new place, a new city that I understand the concept of home better. I read books with home as a focus, recognized it's theme in movies and music and Scripture. I know here in this city which we now call home I am beginning to connect with others through the Charlotte Mason group and through our church. Slowly, I am beginning to feel settled. And yet I miss the familiarity of being well know - of not having to explain my backstory or the backstory of my children. I miss our old routines, our old classes, our old ways of doing things mostly because they were good and safe and familiar. I realize in this longing for the safe and the familiar how home is really defined for me.
Home is when I am well-know, or at least when I am in the process of being well known and of knowing others well. As an INFJ, home is being past the small talk and delving in to conversations that matter. Sometimes this means serious discussion while other times it is light-hearted banter, but either way it is conversation with the purpose of knowing, of fellowship, of intimacy. Perhaps that is what home actually is. It is not an address or a club, a name or a gathering, but a place of knowing and being known. We were created for this. And while it happens imperfectly now, the longing for it points us to the one through whom such knowing happens and in whom we find our true rest and home.