Tuesday, August 13, 2013
“Home. Hard to know what it is if you’ve never had one. Home. I don’t know where it is but I know I’m going home. It’s where the heart is.” – U2, “Walk On”.
As I’ve been thinking about ‘Home’ lately and how good it feels to finally return after a long trip with my family, I realized something. What if you never returned home? What if you didn’t even have a home to return to?
On my way to work every day I pass people carrying everything they own in a garbage bag, or on a pack on their back. Most of them are being released from the Salvation Army shelter that’s two blocks away. They stand outside the Jack in the Box sipping hot coffee, or wander the sidewalks with nowhere to go.
When I think about the longing I have to return home after a few days of vacation, I wonder how I’d feel if I had to hold on to that same longing every moment of my life, with no hope of release.
Jesus understood this longing, and this emptiness. He understands what it feels like to have no place you can call “Home”.
“And Jesus said to him, “Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay his head.” (Luke 9:58)
In fact, Jesus identified so much with this feeling, and with these people, that he decided to measure our love for Him based on how much we love those who are without a home.
“‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’” (Matt.25:40)
There is no place like home, they say. Everyone deserves to have a place where they can rest and relax and be themselves. Everyone deserves the privacy and the dignity and the intimacy that can only be found at home. Jesus understands that better than anyone. He wants us to extend the grace and mercy we’ve received from Him with everyone we meet. Our homes should be open to the stranger, the outcast, and the broken. Our hearts should be open to those who long for the comfort of home but have no place to lay their head.
Please God, give us a heart like yours. Help us to love the way that you love and to give the way that you give so that the love of Jesus can flow out of us and into this broken world.