A Home for the Uprooted

Home is sewn into the seams of my suitcase –  

Caught up in the fragments of childhood memories

Where I can’t place the country or state, let alone the date;

But I remember who was there

 

Home is in the beauty of silver-tipped mountains

And sweeping red canyons;

Where snow sneaks in for Easter

And July Fourth bakes the earth to a crisp

 

Home is in fierce, drumming rainstorms

Crashes of thunder

And the soft blink of fireflies;

Where stars pierce the sky

And mosquitoes outnumber them

Rachel olson home

Home.

The land of ever-changing, ever-flying, ever-new.

And the question, “what are roots?”

 

The longing for something constant in life –

Something else besides “goodbye”

 

The familiar taste of spicy meals and bustling market stalls

A far-off airport terminal I’ve known for as long as I can remember

And the voice of a treasured friend spanning oceans

Or sitting next to me

Home Rachel Olson

Home.

Both everywhere and nowhere

In heartfelt conversations or the scent

of my grandmother’s Irish Spring soap

 

And when it seems shattered, scattered to the winds

In a million pieces too tiny to recover

Home is still here in the promise of the Psalms:

 

“Lord, through all the generations you have been our home! 
Before the mountains were brought forth,
or ever you had formed the earth and the world,
from everlasting to everlasting you are God. ” (Psalm 90:1-2)

“Where can I go from your Spirit?
Where can I flee from your presence?
If I go up to the heavens, you are there;
if I make my bed in the depths, you are there.

If I rise on the wings of the dawn, 
if I settle on the far side of the sea,
even there your hand will guide me,
your right hand will hold me fast.” (
Psalm 139:7-10)

 

Inspired by this post from Communicating Across Boundaries.


Rachel Olson moved back to the US last year after making Africa home for a while. She is now living in her 17th home and has yet to find a simple answer to the question “where are you from?” She longs to see Jesus at work in all of life’s changes and is currently wondering if that might mean returning to Madagascar (one of her previous homes in Africa). You can find more from Rachel on her blog and Instagram, or visit here to help her get back to Madagascar.
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Hope for the Hard Journey

Author: Chara Donahue

CAFE

There is this running theme found in every work of creation – literature, poetry, and movies: the life you see before you is all there is.  Ralph Waldo Emerson said, “Life is a journey, not a destination.” While a beautiful thought with a thread of truth worth contemplating, there IS a destination. For those who see their need for Jesus – to heal their hurts, to wash their stains, and assuage the pain they have inflicted on others – this destination is heaven. A place of beauty, perfection, and eternal life beyond anything we can imagine, and filled with the glory of God.

Yes, we can learn as we live our individual journeys. We should always be praying that we remain teachable, see the beauty breaking forth from each day, and have eyes to see what God is revealing here and now. Yes, we should enjoy the journey on the way to where we are going. But for the Christian, the journey is always pointing toward and longing for the destination: home.

I love the hope found in the story of Ruth. It’s the story of  a woman that many can relate to, because her journey was hard. A dead husband, no children, a bitter mother-in-law, and  she is moving to a culture foreign to all she has known. Yet, she faithfully places her life into the hands of the God of the Israelites, and continues to walk even when her knees are buckling from the weight of the world. It is on this labored trek of endurance that she meets her redeemer (Boaz) a foreshadow of our own (Jesus <3).  This poem was inspired by my interaction with God as I processed Ruth’s story.

Ruth: I know

You invite me on a journey immersed in chesed*.

A woman burdened by bitterness, longing, and dread.

You called me away from the place I thought home

And you beckoned me from the dessert I roamed.

Seems too good to be true, but I draw in a breath.

I weep forward, my clothes of mourning find death.

Here you cleanse me, and draw me to your table of grace.

I am willing to be willing, please show me your face.

My redeemer, true comfort, I find under your wing.

Where you go I go, and your redemption you bring.

A great love story you offer, and here I will stay.

The birth of hope makes up my eternal bouquet.

A veil of legacy flows as you transform my life

That has been rescued from hell, rescued from strife.

I began almost drowning in the tears that I cried

But the conclusion is perfect when you’re Jesus’ bride.

YES, this journey is hard and it is good… but the destination… oh ladies, the destination is better.

IT IS BETTER, no question.
HEAVEN AWAITS.

Heaven awaits, but let us live our lives so that when we get there we hear our Jesus say, “Well done, good and faithful servant.” Let’s live well women, let’s live for our Jesus. Let’s risk loving, risk stepping out in faith, risk having the courage to hope, and may the source of our hope be anchored.

*Chesed : To show kindness or chesed is to act in a loyal, loving way to a person. This is true of kindness in human relationships and of the kindness God shows us.

For further study on the book of Ruth check out Kelly Minter’s study: http://www.lifeway.com/Product/RUTH-LOSS-LOVE-LEGACY-MEMBER-BOOK-P005189427

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For a little dreaming about what her story may have looked like in a different time and place, check out Here Burns My Candle by Liz Curtis Higgs.

 

Verses used to inspire this poem: Ruth 1:8, Ruth 1:16, Ruth 1:14, Ruth 2:14, Revelation 19:6-10, Ruth 2:20, Job 19:25, Isaiah 54:8, Ruth 3:9; Psalm 17:8, Ruth 4:14, Ruth 2:21-22, Hebrews 2:14-15, 7:25, Revelation 19:6-8