Where is home? That might seem a simple question, but for many, including military wives, it can be far from easy to answer.
As I flew into Dallas/Fort Worth airport, on my way to a conference in Oklahoma City, I found myself misty-eyed at several thousand feet, at the sight of the land that I love so dearly. We might have only lived there for two years, but I became a mother in Texas and made several friends that became family. A part of me will always feel at home there.
Then there’s Yorkshire. Or “the most beautiful corner of England,” as I think of it. I spent 18 years growing up there. My heart softens at the sight of the Black Hambleton hills and the thought of James Herriott. Another corner of my soul is tethered there.
And what about amazing Virginia, where I could happily live out the rest of my life? Between serving on our worship team, the legacy of friendships born at the school gate, hosting friends in our family room and fully embracing the life of a writer, Virginia will forever hold a large chunk of heart.
Yet it is unlikely that I’ll grow old in any of these places. I’ve learned in almost 20 years of this military life that home has to be (for me) where we sleep. Otherwise, I’d almost never be at home. The military wife has to have short but strong roots. They need to anchor down deep quickly enough to weather the inevitable storms of life, but then not be so entrenched that they break when pulled up to be planted elsewhere.
One day, that will change and I will have a forever home and it will literally be Heavenly. Just as a fiancée prepares a hope chest for her new home and role as a wife, I’m trying to build mine for the room that’s waiting in my eternal Father’s house. That day when I step into my full inheritance as the Bride of Christ.
There won’t be laundry or dishes or grass to cut. I won’t have to unpack and hang pictures ever again.
Revelation 21 also teaches us that there’ll be no room for sadness, pain or mourning.
There’ll just be joy. Unspeakable joy.