scattered pilgrims

nick and colton basketball hoop

They went back home this weekend, or so they say. Really, they went back to the place of my rooting—those first twenty-one years’ worth of soul-shaping that had me running up and down the roads of that little Bluegrass town. The three of us lived there again for a season following the divorce, right across the street from the place I’d called home for over two decades. The old basketball hoop down the road still hangs as a memorial to a season once lived; it shows signs of aging. I suppose we do as well. After twenty years of being away, age is bound to show up, revealing the weathering of these many years.

I, too, made my way home this weekend. Not to the Bluegrass, although a large part of me was there with my sons as they reminisced about their yesterdays. Instead, I made my way to parents’ home. They’re within a hundred mile reach, so home was doable. Mom and Dad left the front porch light on for me; that’s what makes it home. Not the address. I’ve never lived beneath this roof for more than a night or two. It’s the light and the warmth and the glow of the two lives who, more than a place, have shaped my soul for the grace-journey. Wherever they land, that will always be home to me.

front porch lightMany say that I’m blessed to be able to make the journey. They remind me to take advantage of this time. I know. No one has to prompt me to go home. The desire burns within me … every single day of my life.

My other three – Billy, Jadon, and Amelia? Well, they went to a conference, youth rally this weekend. They call the event Pilgrimage.

Fitting. It all fits, don’t you see? This is the journey before us.

A pilgrimage of faith. A search and discovery mission. A deep, eternal yearning for home. For our roots. For the streets that look familiar and for the front porch light and a front porch Dad that greets us as family and who says, “Welcome home!”

It won’t be long, friends. Just a moment or two from now. A season just beyond this one when our searching will gave way to welcome. A time when we’ll no longer have to gas up our tanks, clock the miles, and go in search of memories.

Until then, I imagine we’ll keep up the exploration. I don’t think we can help ourselves. The yearning is bred deeply within us. Ours is an inheritance of eternal significance that fuels our hearts forward for the warmth and welcome of a Father’s love.

This is the journey before us. This is the pathway home. Walk on, pilgrims of faith, even when your steps are scattered and seemingly out of balance. The search is the thread that keeps us tethered to forever.

A weathered basketball hoop. A front porch light. A crowd of thousands crying out to their Maker.

This is home within reach. This is heaven on earth.

Peace for the Journey,

 Books for Christmas and beyond – includes an autographed copy of Peace for the Journey and Beyond the Scars ($20 – includes shipping / USA orders only).

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10 Responses to scattered pilgrims

  1. Oh my goodness Elaine! You’ve made me crave that time of ”welcome” when I will again see Mama and Daddy and all the other saved loved ones who’ve gone on before! But until then, although I’ll keep thinking ’bout ”home”, I’ll keep putting one foot in front of the other and try to do whatever work the Lord still has for me in this world I live in.

    I always love to hear about you going home to visit your mother and father. Not many grownups get the opportunity to do that. Or else they just don’t TAKE the opportunity to do so. I would just LOVE for my grown kids to feel like they wanted to come home for a day or a night just to visit and be around me and my husband.

    Praying you get a deep rest and renewing while you’re ”home” dear one!

    • Thanks, Marilyn, for being here and for walking this journey with me. Let’s keeping stepping forward together until we reach the front porch! Love you.

  2. I cannot even tell you how many places this post spoke to in my heart. As we wait for God to decide when my Mother’s earth walk is over, we just keep praying that He will be merciful. AND I know He will, but it seems that He is waiting longer than we think He should. My Daddy is already home with Jesus. Apparently one day in recent weeks, my Mother saw Daddy, standing in heaven. No crutches. He had polio when he was 16 and for the rest of his life, walked on crutches. No crutches in heaven. He apparently asked her if she was ready to come be with him. She said not yet.

    “Wherever they land, that will always be home to me.” As my Daddy has landed in heaven, and my Mother is probably not to many weeks from there, heaven is feeling more and more like home to me. Thank you for this lovely post, Elaine. It blessed me this morning.

  3. I can’t wait to see the Savior face-to-face. I can’t tell you how many times He has led me back home to His welcoming front porch light. The Light of the World, ever leading me back to Him. And then, one day, He will lead me to my eternal home. I live for the day when He opens the door and says, “Well done, good and faithful servant.”

    GOD BLESS!

  4. I’m sure looking forward to that Welcome Home in heaven. Not only will the Father be there waiting to welcome me, but my mom will be waiting as well. Like you said, it won’t be long now. Blessings, Elaine!