We’re entering the time of year when people are making plans to travel. Some of us may only need to go a few miles to reach our destinations, while others may need to drive or fly long distances. Our reasons are all the same.
The word home is loaded with hopes and expectations. Time spent there includes sharing a meal with loved ones or exchanging gifts. It means catching up on stories and news. It might also involve sharing in games or concerts and making special memories. These things are all wonderful, and we might enjoy them very much, but they still may not completely answer our longing for a true home. Somewhere that we can find peace. A place where we know we will never get hurt again. A space where loss cannot happen, we never have to say good-bye, and we won’t ever be forced to leave it.
Mary and Joseph strayed far from home at the time their first child was about to enter the world. Their travel was forced upon them by a tyrannical ruler in the Roman Empire. I wonder how Mary felt as distance grew between her, their families, and their home town. A young woman ready to deliver a baby would want the comfort of her mother and the trusted local midwife nearby. How she must have longed at times for Joseph to just turn the donkey around. If he’d take her back home, she could give birth in her own bed instead of along the road or among strangers.
For as uncertain as the trip may have been for Mary, a moment arrived when she came home. The things she longed for lay wrapped in the bundle in her arms. This new baby she and Joseph named Jesus would bring her salvation. He would offer her a grace that overcame any of the pain and distress of her journey to Bethlehem. His limitless provisions of peace and love would satisfy her better than the comforts of home back in Nazareth ever could. She was welcome to stay in this place for as long as she wished. The stark manger in a musty barn probably didn’t hold much charm, but the promise of a relationship with this newborn reached into eternity. Jesus gave her a place in his kingdom that would never end. Mary never needed to leave. She wouldn’t need to say good-bye to him or sustain any loss of his favor and care.
Are you living far from God this holiday season? Have you lost your way home or forgotten how to find it? Jesus knows your way home. He is your way home. He stands at the door ready to welcome you in.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Michelle De Bruin is a worship leader and spiritual services provider. She lives in Iowa with her husband and two teenage sons. A romantic at heart, Michelle is always looking for glimpses of God’s love through the window of a good story.
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Michelle's website: https://michelledebruin.com/
ABOUT HOPE FOR TOMORROW
When Logan De Witt learns of his father’s sudden death, he returns home to the family’s dairy farm. During his stay, he discovers his mother’s struggle with finances and his younger sister’s struggle with grief. Concern for his family presses Logan to make the difficult decision to leave his career as a pastor and stay on the farm. As a way to make some extra money, he agrees to board the teacher for their local school.
Karen Millerson arrives from Chicago ready to teach high school but her position is eliminated so she accepts the role of country school teacher. Eager to put her family’s ugly past behind her, Karen begins a new career to replace the trust she lost in her own father who had been in ministry when she was a child.
Logan and Karen both sense a call from the Lord to serve him, but neither of them expected that one day they would do it together.
Can Karen learn to trust again? Will Logan lay aside his grief in exchange for God’s purpose for his life? Barnes and Noble Amazon
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