I knew this post would come sooner or later, so I figure I might as well go ahead and get it out of the way. Hopefully by writing about my homesickness I can close that page of our journey…at least for the meantime anyway. This isn’t your typical “wish list”. I’m not gonna write down what I’d like for Christmas or what I’d buy if I won the lottery. Don’t fret. I don’t gamble. Although my kids would beg to differ after they recently watched me scratch the McDonald’s monopoly cards the other day and get all giggly over a FREE ice cream cone as if it were a million bucks. 🙂
No, this list is different. I’m going to list the things that have crossed my mind recently. Many of them reflect more of a deeper longing to go HOME where this pilgrim belongs while others reflect the superficial desires of most missionaries. Of course, we live in a fallen world and His grace allows us to just “suck it up” and keep running the race. But if I had my cake and could eat it too, I’d wish for…
– Unlimited luggage allowance so we could bring the comforts of “home” along with us on our journey or perhaps even a Walmart in every place we live 🙂
– Personal air conditioners…sized to fit each member of the family that we could strap to our backs. Oh yeah, no generator required to run them!
– A portable homeschool teacher that would love my children as much as I do. He/she would have way more patience that I have. This would free me up to do more language/culture study in the village. Boy would this be a Godsend!
– Cheaper plane ticket prices so that we could go home more often for shorter periods of time or even bring family/friends over to our neck of the woods at least once a year.
– No more loss. No more pain. No allergies, headaches, malaria or typhoid fever. Oh that everyone would get to hear the Good News before they leave this world!
– Priorities…that we wouldn’t have to struggle to make “time” for Him. Why can’t life just leave me alone?! Why is it so hard to find my “Garden of Eden”?
– Unlimited energy to tackle each day’s workload. How I wish we weren’t limited by our frail and flakey human bodies! Imagine what I could do if I didn’t need a nap!
– A pocket-sized attitude adjuster that would prevent me from sticking my foot in my mouth and being a stumbling block to those around me. Of course, I would specify that it would painlessly fix our pride, stubbornness, laziness, and temper without letting those around us know we’ve “fallen”. I wonder what that kind of contraption would sell for…
– Unity in the body of Christ to the point that we live out the passage that says NO WEAPON formed against me shall stand! How I wish we could all unite under the Jesus-following umbrella of love…not to sing Kum ba ya around the campfire and share sappy, happy-ever-after stories that often draw more attention to ourselves than to our God…but to obediently be that “city on a hill” whose light draws all those around us to Him!
– Love for another…the kind of love that only God can give and only Jesus truly showed. Lord help us to love our neighbor unconditionally knowing that our actions to the “least-of-these” as well as “keepers-of-the-law” pleases You. Help us to remember that it’s more about You and me than me and them.
– No more goodbyes. They don’t get any easier. If anything…the tears fall faster and last longer. The wound never heals on the inside and I suspect it won’t this side of heaven. Sure, skype calls and facebook (when we’re in town and out of the village) may help to suture the irreparable heartache that separation causes but I imagine even watching your grandchildren grow up in photos from afar serves only as a reminder that you’ll have to get to know them all over again when you see each other in a few years.
– An anti-aging machine that would keep my parents and family young and healthy forever! There’s nothing like a few more wrinkles or a slower pace of life to remind you that certain family members may not be around next time you’re home. While this realization does make me want to make every moment count…writing my Grandmother’s Last Will and Testament this past furlough reminded me that she might not make it out for another visit to our village like she’d hoped to do. Her next long distance trip might just be the final homecoming! In all honestly…I’m not sure how I’d feel about that. Since this is my selfish wish list, I wish for her to move to the village and live out her days with us 🙂 “See you in a couple years” can only be said so many times before it becomes more long-term.
Ok…I better stop there. This goal of this post was to help with homesickness, not to be overcome by it. When I first started thinking about writing this I thought it’d end up being a light, reminiscing post about missing furlough comforts. It seems it has turned out to be more about the soul cries of a pilgrim wishing her cross wasn’t so heavy. While I’m pleased by my lack of carnal, surface longings (although I’d kill for some Dairy Queen), the incessant nagging in my spirit reminds me that I’m not home yet. I must continue to obediently carry the cross I chose, along with its consequences down the road set before me and trust that His grace is sufficient…
even for my homesick wish list.