What is home to you?
Home for me has always been a little town south of Buffalo, NY, nestled in the Alleghany Mountains. Salamanca was a little town that shared its soil with the Seneca Nation Indian Reservation. It was heaped in culture and was truly a melting pot. My childhood home was nestled in a beautiful valley with pastures and rolling hills surrounding it. There was a long, winding driveway that lead up to my humble home and I truly loved living there. My Grandpa’s home was right next door and everyday I would visit him, knowing that he would have milk and lemon sandwich cookies waiting for me.
Home is meat and potatoes cooked about 4 different ways, one of which we ate every night. (To this day, I cannot stand mashed potatoes.)
Home was homemade jam and canned peaches, even in the winter.
Home was my mother’s humming and my dad’s swooning voice as he would try to serenade her.
Home was “Hello, my little chickadee.” This was the greeting my mother heard when my dad would return from work or hunting. My greeting was, “How’s my punkin’ wunkin’?”
Home was the smell of the wood burning stove and the chilly floor in the morning before the stove warmed up the house.
Home was the watching the snow fall outside from the big picture window in our diningroom.
Home was sledding all day with my brothers and then a warm dinner, followed by more sledding.
Home was playing cards with my parents every Saturday night.
But home was also the place where alcohol and a cult took over my family and has permanently marked all of its members for life.
I left that home and that cult when I was 17-years-old and I soon after found Jesus. He welcomed me into His permanent home and family. I have a Christian family that surrounds me now and my children are being raised in a Christian home. They love Jesus and hurt for their extended family who don’t know Him.
I am going “home” today. I haven’t seen my homestead in two years. I cannot wait to drive up that country road and see the smoke billowing from the chimney before I even see my parent’s house. What a welcomed sight it will be. It always seems smaller then I remember. I cannot wait to walk in my mom’s little kitchen and be greeted by her warm hug and the smell of the wood burning stove. “How’s my little punkin’ wunkin’?” will still greet me along with a hug from my dad, followed by, “And how’s my littlest punkin’ wunkin’s?” for my kids. Oh, I just can’t wait for that.
My life’s foundation began here, but my life’s foundation in Christ began 3,000 miles away. In many ways, this has become foreign soil to me. Someday, I hope to share the eternal soil of my “home in Christ” with my family.
For now, I am an alien there.