finding home

Written by Brandee Shafer

Brandee Shafer is an English instructor turned SAHM to the 3.5 children for whom she records her life and thoughts, through blogging. She, her husband Jim, and their children live in a log cabin on the outskirts of Richmond, Virginia, where she writes, teaches Sunday school, and tries, daily, to diminish toppling piles of dishes and laundry.

June 15, 2012

The manufacturer tags on an Airstream Travel Trailer.

When I was eleven years old, my parents moved our family (and my horse) from Greencastle, Pennsylvania to East Tennessee. Since that time, when nearly everyone I knew and loved lived nearby, I’ve never felt entirely grounded or rooted anywhere.

From East Tennessee I moved to Fort Wayne, Indiana…then to Dallas, Texas; Shenandoah, Virginia; and the outskirts of Richmond, Virginia. Although I can wax nostalgic about most anywhere I’ve ever lived, for twenty-seven years, nowhere has felt “just so.” It’s no one’s fault. I have a messed-up, mixed-up accent, and–because I’ve found it impossible to unlive any of the places I’ve ever lived–I have some funny ideas by most people’s standards.

At thirty-eight, then, I’ve finally given up thinking that any earthly place would satisfy more than the place in which I live, today. It’s complicated. Home, in my heart, isn’t a place. Home is people, and the people who are my home are spread far and wide; some of them, in fact, have left this world, altogether.

I feel restless inside, unsatisfied. And I know: the one and only answer for this pilgrim rests in Jesus Christ. I’m not trying to make this about heaven versus hell; I don’t believe in making eternity about place. I believe in making eternity about the Person of Jesus. I want to congregate at His feet with all my people, but I know–even if I don’t find someone I love, there–my heart won’t ache after I’ve made my way to where He is.

Until then, expect me to indulge my fascination with roadside architecture; to allow Merle Haggard’s voice to soothe what ails me in the way only it can; and to burn through laptops, phones, gas, and tires. I can’t seem to stay home. What is home? Not this log cabin. Jim Dear, my long-suffering husband, just shakes his head and watches the sand and empty juice boxes accumulate in our minivan.

I’m 99.9% sure there’s an Airstream in my future. I’m planning to drive it just as close to Jesus as I can get.

15 Comments

  1. jodi @ curious acorn

    “I have a messed-up, mixed-up accent.” Me too! we moved A LOT when I was a kid. My real home came with the Lord, my husband, and our kids.It was worth the wait,and just think, in Him there’s more to come.

    Reply
    • smoothstones

       thank the Lord (((Jodi)))

      Reply
  2. Duane Scott

    “And I know: the one and only answer for this pilgrim rests in Jesus Christ.” 

    Just love this… Yes, I know that feeling. 

    Thank you for this Brandee. 

    Reply
    • smoothstones

       Thank you, Duane, for the invitation to share.

      Reply
  3. Sheila Seiler Lagrand

    That restless heart, yes, I know the feeling. 

    Should you ever ramble west, my dear… our door is open. 

    Reply
    • smoothstones

       Someday, Sheila, I do hope…

      Reply
  4. JQ

    I, too, find home in other people.  Beautiful words.  Thanks for sharing!

    Reply
    • smoothstones

       Thank you for reading! Are you my JQ, in CT?

      Reply
  5. Annie Watson Gislason

    Lovely post. 🙂

    Reply
    • smoothstones

       Thanks, Friend.

      Reply
  6. happygirl

    Sweet story of wanderlust.  The bus people have bought their bus and are getting ready to go.  I, personally, cannot understand this in any way.  Maybe they are looking for Jesus, too.  I’ve moved many times in our marriage.  I’m ready to move again.  I can’t imagine any place on this earth would feel like home to me, either.  I pray, Jesus do not tarry.

    Reply
  7. Amy L. Sullivan

    Brandee,
    And now I like you even more. Spent a lot of my years moving too.

    Reply
  8. pastordt

    LOVE this, Brandee. Thank you. Airstreams are good people.

    Reply
    • smoothstones

       Ooh! Do you have one?

      Reply
      • pastordt

        No, I don’t have one – but I love to see them on the road. There used to be a whole traveling caravan of them – they’d ship them all over the world and then drive, drive, drive. In the 1950’s they went from Capetown to Cairo. Amazing.

        Reply

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finding home

by Brandee Shafer time to read: 2 min
15