"Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever." Hebrews 13:8
DAY 30: Fear of Change-Good-Bye to My Childhood Home
After 32 years, my parents are moving out of my childhood home. Maybe you've visited there before. It's small, but was never too small for lots of guests. It's modest, but was always full of the best love that money could never buy. It's simple, but was full of the complexities of life for a family of four. It was my home.
It was a home that my mom, my dad, Bitsy our dog, Heather our cat, Ricky our raccoon, and I moved into when I was only seven years old. I was so excited to explore the 20 acres of trees, and I was especially excited to finally have my own bedroom and my very own closet.
When we opened the front door together, none of us had any idea of all the memories that would be made in this new place that was about to become our home.
I had no idea that the very door we had opened would be the door that I would walk through before going to my first gymnastics meet...before going to my first day of junior high...before going to my first dance...before going on my first date...before going to cheer at my first basketball game...before getting my driver's license...before going to my first prom...before heading off to college...
Before burying our pet raccoon...before saying good-bye to many family members...
I had no idea that the very door we had opened would be the door that I would walk through after dancing my first dance...after getting my ear's pierced...after our basketball team won an exciting game...after an exhausting but fun Mercer Family vacation...after a long day of sledding on our winding driveway.
After burying our precious cats...after having my heart broken...
Before many joys and sorrows, and after many laughs and tears... was my home. It was my constant in between all the changes. It was my refuge. It was the door I opened on my way out into the world and it was the door I closed when I came back in to its comfort, safety and love. No matter what changes were going on in my life, my home...my family...was there.
It was at this home that I learned how to throw a football...I waded in the creek...I collected rocks...I raked leaves...I stepped in raccoon poop...I raised 4 kittens...I enjoyed birthday parties and even 2 surprise parties...I had sleepovers...I walked on stilts...I had weeny roasts...I played school and house...I got punched and tickled by my big brother...I played video games (good 'old Texas Instruments--betcha never heard of that game system)...
It was at this home that I got my first puppy...I saw my precious Sophie dog take her first breath and her last...I turned countless cartwheels...I watched TV on our dial TV that only had 4 channels and when I wanted to change channels, I had to go outside and turn a huge antennae--No, I'm not kidding!
It was at this home that I got bruised knees and scratched elbows...I celebrated Christmases and Birthdays...I searched for Easter eggs...I laughed...I cried...I learned tough lessons...I ate many meals at our kitchen table...I learned that friends were always welcome...I learned that family mattered most...
It was at this home that I learned that I was always welcome no matter how old I was...I announced our engagement...I spent the night there before our wedding night...I slept there many nights when our marriage was struggling...I announced that they were going to be blessed with their fourth grandchild...I saw my parents play with their grandkids...I would go there for help with my kids...I would go there for a nice homemade meal...
All of that is going to change. Things will be different. My parents will have a new home only three minutes away from us now which is such a blessing. It will be great. I know it will. I know new memories will be created and a new home will be made.
But it's still change. And change is scary. Change means letting go. In this case, change means letting go of my childhood home that I hold so dearly in my heart.
The bible says in Ecclesiastes 3 that "For everything there is a season. A time for every activity under heaven." It also says in verse 11 "For God has made everything beautiful for its own time."
Change is a part of life. The seasons change...my homes change...my kids change...I change...life changes, but the good news is that amongst all the change around me, God never changes. He is the same yesterday, today and forever. So instead of fearing the changes that are happening, I need to embrace them and trust God to show me the beauty He has for me through each change.
Saying good-bye to my childhood home brings me sadness, but I find peace when I realize that God is really my True Home. He goes wherever I go. He is my Refuge. God is there no matter what door I open or close.
God is my home.
Are you ready to let go of your fear of change? Are you ready to trust God to be your Home no matter where you are and no matter what changes are taking place in your life right now?
Lord, I give my fear of change to You today. Fill my heart with gratitude for the home that You've given me to grow up in and more importantly, for the people and the precious memories that I've made in it. Help me to embrace the change that comes with moving on...with moving forward...with opening new doors. Help me to understand that no matter what changes go on around me, You never change. You are the same. You are with me wherever I go...whatever I do. Father, shine Your light into my fear of change and allow me to walk boldly forward in confidence knowing that You are my home forever. In Jesus' name. Amen.