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10 Minutes Peace

    by Susan McGrath

Goin' Home
Date Posted: July 14, 2007

My kids are always ready to go somewhere, but they also are usually ready to come home long before I am. "Mo-om! When are we going home?" starts as a single whine and soon becomes a chorus.

It's always nice to come home (except when you've left the house in a mess). After a hard day's work we want to come home and put our feet up. Sadly, the table must be cleaned off first. Oh yeah, and homework supervised and kids fed and phone calls returned and mail sorted and . . . anyway, it's nice to come home to the comfortable and familiar. Many women take pride in their homes, some are beautiful and look like a magazine or a museum. Some are comfortable and warm and look like they used to look like a magazine until someone came home and dropped their bag on the floor and ate chips on the sofa.

My grandmother had siblings who lived in several states, but when they "came home" they always stayed with her rather than with one of her sisters or at a hotel. Her house was apparently the closest thing to home. My mother inherited that knack for creating a comfortable home. My brothers and I brought carloads of friends home from the time we were in grade school until, well, now. I'm still waiting see if I inherited the "comfortable home gene." Right now mine is just a little heavy on the lived-in look and lacking in the magazine gloss. Someday I hope to achieve a balance that allows my kids to bring home their friends without being embarrassed by the mess and without having to worry if they drop crumbs in the sofa. (No, that does not mean you can eat in the living room!)

Home is the symbol for family, safety and love in our society. E. T. had a nice house and good friends here on earth, yet his huge eyes got teary when he told Elliott he wanted to "phone home". I've heard my family and friends refer to "going home for the weekend" when they really meant going to the home of their parents - the home where they grew up. Several years ago a company began producing soft chocolate chip cookies and named them "Almost Home". Any food claiming the title "homemade" we assume to be wholesome, delicious and reminiscent of something intangible from our past. I mean, who doesn't like homemade apple pie topped with hand-cranked, homemade ice cream?

We have Homecomings at schools and churches and Old Home Week in communities, where people from everywhere come back to their roots, seeking a familiar place and a friendly face.

Many songs were written by people who were pining for home. Stephen Foster wrote about the "Suwannee River" and "My Old Kentucky Home." Today we have Jon Bon Jovi singing "Who Says You Can't Go Home." Then there are the old spirituals, which sing about a different kind of home. One laments, or rejoices perhaps, "Goin' home, goin' home. I'm just goin' home. It's not far, just close by, through an open door". I think this must be referring to a heavenly home. Like E.T., we are aliens on this earth - heaven is what we pine for.

For those of us in Christ, he is our home. In John 1, Jesus says that He goes to prepare a place for us and that He will return for us so that where He is, we may be also. What a homecoming that will be!

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Biography Information:
Susan McGrath is:

a recovering journalist trying to encourage others and glorify God through writing;

living the small-town life with husband Tim and sons Lincoln, 12, and Sawyer, 6;

completing a few put-off writing projects while using chocolate for therapy.
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