This weekend my first born and only daughter is coming home! She moved out on her own at 18 and has lived a little over an hour away. I know that is not very far, but that was 12 years ago and she has had a rough couple of years. It is hard watching a loved one go through life’s trials and not be there physically for them to hug and wipe a tear.
With my daughter moving back closer to us, I get the extra bonus of spending more time with my grandson and granddaughter. They have spent a lot of time with Grams and Pop, but it will be so much easier to be able to drive a few minutes and pick them up for an all day adventure or for just a couple of hours of fun.
This special homecoming has brought up memories of all the other special homecomings in my life.
Bringing new babies home was a very special homecoming. I can remember each of my three sisters coming home from the hospital and my own three children. Any time leaving the hospital was a great homecoming!
For a time, my husband was in the US Navy. Those six month deployments were months of loneliness and hard work for both of us. A Navy wife is essentially a single parent much of the time. I can still remember how excited the kids and I would be when it was time for Daddy to come home. We made a “Welcome Home” poster. We stood at the dock and watched the ship gradually roll in. We could not climb the endless steps to the deck fast enough! Our first time, I had to carry my son who was just two. His big sister (two years older) was in front of us. She made it about a quarter of the way up – then bam! fear of heights sets in! She froze! With so many families impatiently waiting to see their loved ones, it was an awkward moment. I really did not know what I would do! Fortunately a kind man in front of her scooped her up and carried her up the steps! Reunions could be made after all…
We lived in Virginia while in the Navy. It was the only time we did not live in Louisiana. We missed our family back home. My parents, God bless them, made the long trip to Virginia several times, pulling their camper. They were at our door just four months after we left. They were also the ones who drove over when my husband was in the Gulf War and was about to be discharged. They came collect me and the kids so that I could get a job and place to live for our new start back home. My parents must have been so happy! Their daughter was coming home!
I suppose there are many homecomings in one’s life time. Some are literal homecomings, others are on an emotional or spiritual level. The Lord rejoices at all of our “spiritual” homecomings. At baptism we become a member of God’s family. He welcomes us with open arms. Once we are old enough to understand the teachings of the Church and make that leap of faith to follow Jesus, I am sure Our Lord is again rejoicing and leading us to our true home. Our Lord knows that the most important homecoming occurs at our death.
Because I know my happiness in my daughter’s homecoming, I can only imagine our Father’s happiness when we move over from this earthly life to our spiritual life in His Presence. In heaven we are reunited with Our Father and our loved ones who have gone before us. What a homecoming that must be!
1 Thessalonians 5:9 “For God has not destined us for wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, who died for us so that whether we wake or sleep we might live with Him.”
In the midst of the big move this weekend, my family and I will stop and take time to thank our Heavenly Father, who makes all these homecomings possible.
My Elizabeths and Luke,
Sherry (Mom and Grams)