What is it about going home that pulls on the heart strings? What is the attraction to reuniting with an old friend? Why do we search for old pictures or precious family treasures? How come we would rather have old Christmas ornaments on our tree instead of all brand new?
We all are looking for things that remain the same; things/places/people.
REMAIN by definition is: “To continue to possess a particular quality or fulfill a particular role.” Basically, ‘remain’ means to stay the same!
I remember being so excited for a summer trip to our camp on Wickwas Lake in N.H. I knew the tree house would still be where it was last time. Still be exactly the same way I left it. If I hid some little treasure within its walls, I knew right where it’d be. I was sure the cupboards in the camp would hold the same tin cups. I could find them with my eyes closed. The inviting, cozy fireplace was exactly as I remembered from the years before. Wood stacked and fireplace poker leaned against it as always. My heart would feel all kinds of warm and fuzzy.
We are drawn to things that remain the same.
Your mom’s pies, Thanksgiving stuffing, homemade bread… things that you can depend on to taste like they have for your entire life! Your dad’s greasy tools, hunting gear (complete with woodsy scents), favorite flannel shirt – things you can depend on to smell like they have always.
Photo albums, dusty antique glassware, handmade Christmas ornaments, books, grandma’s quilts – just a short list of treasures from the past that STILL matter to you because they remain the same.
In the children’s movie “Hook”, Peter Pan, all grown up, goes back to see the “Lost Boys”. They struggled to identify him. One little boy comes right up to his face, looks deep in his eyes and says, “Oh, there you are, Peter!” We want to keep our own true identity through all the seasons of life.
I was thinking that I myself want to be known by others as one who remains the same. Sure, I need to always grow and evolve and become a more polished version, but in essence I want to stay ME.
I remember after my husband died, saving every little thing he ever touched. He had a pair of broken binoculars I couldn’t part with. I knew his clear blue eyes had once gazed through them at the unchanging mountains of West Virginia. This gave the broken binoculars a priceless value. We all are drawn to our own history because it has formed us and made us who we are.
We long for home, whatever that looks like to each of us. If our past is a messy thing, we will even more so look for something beautiful and unchanging to hang on to. It’s the familiar and the solid places that we search for all our lives. It’s a place, a person, a smell, a feel, a view, a taste – things that never change that connect us back to our roots.
One Thing Remains
In our ever changing world, it’s sadly becoming harder to find our tree houses and tin cups. We that are older need to work harder at preserving history and our own heirlooms for the next generation. Thirty years from now, they may need to glean from WHO we are NOW. And more than recipes, ornaments and antiques it is our FAITH that we need to leave behind as an indestructible legacy.
At the end of the day there is ONE constant that will outlast that tree house (which is now torn down), yellowed photo albums, mom’s thanksgiving dinners and even home sweet home itself. There is only one thing that remains forever and His name is Jesus.
Jesus never changes – therefore His love, mercy, healing power, redeeming grace and all the other solid unmovable parts of Who He is remain the same from generation to generation. He remains.
“Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.” (Hebrews 13:8)
No matter if I can’t find my way home, I find great comfort in knowing I can always look in His eyes and feel the relief of, ‘Oh, there You are Jesus!’