This one’s for you, Genny…
Magnolia leaves cover my mantle. Garland and lights festoon my front door. Nativity scenes from all over the world are spread all over the house. Christmas cookies sit, waiting to be served. Ornaments sparkle on artificial trees. Stockings hang empty, waiting. As a song once said, “There’s no place like home for the holidays.”
And, there’s nothing quite like being homesick then either. Aching for family, for friends, for the familiar.
I remember the first Christmas I spent in another country and how everything from the mosque next door’s music to the way people wished you a “happy” Christmas instead of a “merry” one made me miss home all the more.
I invited friends over to decorate cookies. We watched movies. We cooked meals. But even with her recipes, it wasn’t grandma’s cooking.
At those times, the craziest things can make you cry. I rented the movie “My Dog Skip,” which I hadn’t seen, and from the moment the narrator said, “I grew up in a small town called Yazoo, Mississippi,” I started crying and didn’t stop until the movie’d been over for an hour and a half.
It’s just hard to be away from home during the holidays. And, at times, you forget you have a Friend who knows exactly how you feel.
Think about it. Nothing could be farther from the streets of gold than a stable in Bethlehem. Nothing could be farther from a holy heaven than a sin-filled world. You miss your family. He missed his Father.
He knows the hollow ache of homesickness, and he knows better than we what causes it. He knows our hearts are not content here. They long for Home, just as He did.