Saturday, June 16, 2007

Where is Home?

Sunday, June 17, 2007
Readings here.

Where is home for you? What does being at home mean? What are the signs that make you breathe "HOME?" For Naboth it was his ancestral land - his vineyard that his father and father's father and so on had planted and tended. Ahab wanted the land but even the offer of better land would not change Naboth's mind - because this was his home. Jezebel had Naboth killed so Ahab could have the land. Only death could break Naboth's connection to the land.
How many people in this world still have a connection to land that is so strong? One still finds family ranches like this. The Shoshone in Wyoming feel this connection to their land (what is left of it). Maybe you still live in the home where you were a child. Our kids have trouble thinking about us living anywhere but the house where they grew up - the bedrooms are still "theirs" and we still call them by that name. Some of us it in the same pew in church - and don't really feel settled if we have to sit somewhere else. For most people in the US and around the world this has changed or is changing. People move for jobs, or because of war, or to feed their families, or for adventure. Many have to move or like Naboth because otherwise they will be killed - because someone else wants their home.
The woman (who is not Mary Magdalene!) who anoints Jesus with her tears and her hair is looking for a different kind of home. A home for her heart. Those around her see her as the wild stranger from the streets. Jesus sees her as a beloved daughter. He offers acceptance of her as she is, allows her to touch him, sees the love in her, and reflects back the love of God for her.
How in this transient world can Holy Communion be a home of the heart for people in Rock Springs. This is our challenge as we gain new members - can we make room or will those who have been here longer feel dispossessed? Will newer members find a place to offer their gifts here?
Lots of questions - I pray we will learn the answers as we journey together.


Grandmère Mimi said...

What are the signs that make you breathe "HOME?"

My signs are not ranches or vast stretches of land, but small plots of city land in various places in the ruined city of New Orleans. Although I have lived in my present location for almost 40 years, New Orleans will always be the home of my heart.

I expect that my children will think of our small town as home, although one of my daughters lives in suburban New Orleans - not quite the same as in the city. My sons stayed close to home. We still call their rooms by their names here, too.

I did feel as though I had come home, when I moved from the RCC to the Episcopal Church. It seemed the place where I belonged.

In a growing church, there is the challenge of the old to the new, and the new to the old. I pray that your and your church community meet the challenge, Ann.

Mary Clara said...

This is very poignant, Ann. I was moved around so much as a child and always wanted to claim a place as my own. I still hold Wyoming as a home of my heart though I left it almost fifty years ago. There was always a temporariness in our family's connection to place. Finding a home in church as a child really helped -- not just the church community itself, but the sense of being part of God's household and God's kingdom which stretch far beyond 'God's country' (Wyoming!). I'm holding you and the good people of Rock Springs in my prayers and am glad to be 'in communion' with you from far-off Canterbury.

Barbara said...

Home of the Heart

What makes a place
A heart's true home?
One wonders.

For me
It is where
Every cell
is alive
Not just a few.

And the music I hear
Is being played on an instrument
before time began.