Why Home Matters

We all want to know there is a landing or jumping off point in this chaos we call life.

Yesterday I lost my shit. I took my “Karen” to the internet and let loose, too. It was a sight to behold. All the while, but especially today, I have wondered, why am I acting like this? Why does having a home matter so much? I have a roof over my head right now, so why have I lost patience?

There are a lot of answers. I identify as an 8 on the enneagram- and at my innermost person, provision and stability of the basics is super important to me. I am motivated to provide that for others, but also, when my own is threatened, I become my most 8 self in anger and I will fight anyone in my path. *Did you hear my high pitched voice saying, “I will fight you!”???*

With well over 40 moves in my life of 47 years, while I am not a true Nomad, I relate deeply. When my partner’s mom died, a part of me died. Her home had been our permanent address (a military term) for over 20 years. With her death, I lost the only address I had ever had for years on end and any sense of a place to return to if things got really rough. But even with that, I have never felt like I really had a home, or at best, that I had a right to call a place home.

I have been homeless, too. I have slept in other people’s homes and even in a parked boat (yes, on wheels) for months on end. I have had “no forwarding address” and have lost contact with so many people over the years. I am pretty sure if previous life exists, I was seaweed or an airplant- no roots.

So when I ask myself, “Why does a house matter so much that I will lose my patience and go off on folks over yet another delay” I am asking from a perspective of not ever really having a home- not a real one that I can always say is there.

So if I can live this homeless in my heart and at times physically and still thrive, why does this matter? It comes down to this:

We all want a place we belong.

We all want to know there is a corner of this world where we can claim it and know it is ours and we belong to it too. We all want to know there is a landing or jumping off point in this chaos we call life. We want to know there is a touchstone- a place we can reset and reorient ourselves.

And here is what I have learned, too:

God is our touchstone.

When I lose focus on that (and yep, pastors do that, too!) I lose my sense of direction- as though my compass for life and the world is missing. And then I lose my shit and my patience. I can look past a lot of human failings and gaps until I lose focus on my touchstone- who reminds me I am more than this body.

And this is the story of the human condition; our need to know our place, yet limiting ourselves to our bodily needs denies our greatest one- to know we are claimed and can claim in return.

That is the meaning of home: A place where we are known, claimed and we know and claim in return. And this matters because we are created in love, for love, by the greatest Love.

So today, I am loving myself. I am reminding myself that God loves me and claims me and that is not undone by my very human moments of Karen-ness. Today I am forgiving myself and apologizing to those I was short with. I am remembering my place is all of this and none of it- and that is the best touchstone ever.

Author: mistressofdivinity

Pastor of St James Lutheran (E.L.C.A) and Episcopal Church of the Saviour, two congregation in the San Joaquin Valley of Central California. Even though the diploma reads "Master of Divinity," the learning continues and I have the wrong body parts to earn a "masters" so I claim Mistress. I lean into this pastoral role more each day, learning to balance vocation and family, life and passion, living and loving.

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