I am happy to welcome Cara Meredith to Living in Graceland today. Cara has graciously agreed to guest post with her thoughts on home. I know you will feel welcomed so grab a cup of tea and get comfy.
I’ve been out of town for 19 of the last 35 days.
And as you might guess, I’m itching for home.
I don’t travel regularly for work, not in the least. Mostly, I take care of my babies, and I speak and write on the side. But occasionally – as happened in the past 35 days – all travel and activity fell at once. Between two out of state speaking engagements, one trip to visit family across country, one weekend visit to the mountains with friends, and another trip across country for a writing conference, I’m wiped.
Really, this isn’t anything new. Think about the common cold: when one person in a family gets sick, every person in a family gets sick.
Or, when said sickness decides to pay an individual a visit, it’s always at the most inopportune of times – when we’re in the middle of a busy season or immediately afterwards when we’ve finally taken a moment to stop and pause and catch our breath.
It’s an all-at-once mentality, and be it sickness or travel or life in general, it gets pretty exhausting after awhile.
And personally, it makes me yearn for home.
Because home, at least as it’s intended to be, is the place we let down our guard. Home is where we’re our most real and raw and vulnerable selves. Home, of course, is where the heart is, and home is where I go when I need to put on my yoga pants and rub dry shampoo in my hair and not wear make-up for a day or two.
Home is the place where comfort and solace and grace meet us at the door, welcoming us in, beckoning us to kick up our feet and relax.
Now my home, mind you, is not always the place of respite I yearn for it to be, especially when two young boys stake claim on their castle morning, noon and night.
Instead, more often than not, I’m greeted with a sprinkling of dust-laden Cheerios on the floor of the living room and the top of a bedroom dresser overflowing with the contents of my husband’s pockets from prior after-work emptying excursions. Backpacks lay open on the floor, and the toy room is a mess, and have I mentioned that I don’t think the refrigerator’s been cleaned out in at least two or three weeks’ time?
A prominent funk, as you might guess, has started to make my nose crinkle. And Calgon, mind you, is nowhere near taking me away.
But this home, even with all its quirks and mannerisms and smells and messes, is mine. It is as unique and individual to me as my preference for honey in my tea instead of sugar, as welcoming to me as an old friend who hugs me long when I haven’t seen her in months.
Maybe, it’s in the beauty of the mess that we find our true home. It’s in our everyday, ordinary lives, and our more than everyday, ordinary, messy houses that we find the One who brings us to a place of comfort.
And it’s in this home – or shall I say Home? – that we find true rest.
That, I suppose, is what I think about as I look forward to curling up under my own blankets, in my own bed, in my own somewhat messy room, in just a few hours.
And in this home Peace will find me, too.
Cara Meredith is a writer, speaker and musician from the greater San Francisco bay area. She is passionate about theology and books, her family, meals around the table, and finding Beauty in the most unlikely of places. A seven on the Enneagram, she also can’t help but try to laugh and smile at the ordinary everyday. You can connect with her on her blog, Facebook, and Twitter.