Saturday, October 19, 2013

Flying home.

Spent four days in Chicago with the Organizing for Mission cohort this week.  Learned a lot, made new friends and connections, got invigorated.  Also did not get as much sleep as I would like, and felt exhausted and over-peopled a good chunk of the time, too.  I was sad to leave and also glad to be on the plane.

As our place descended to the Cities, I wondered which of my many homes we might fly over.  Would it be my parents' house in Maplewood?  My dorms at Saint Olaf in Northfield?  The old apartment in Minneapolis?  My seminary apartment in Saint Paul?

All of those places are writ hard upon my heart, and yet none of them feel like home.

We flew from the southeast, and so we crossed none of them; we crossed, instead, the place that has been most home to me this year; Cedar Ave and Pilot Knob and the church-that-is-an-elementary-school.

I have lost much, this year, and none of what I lost were things I was prepared to lose.  I don't have a home, not the kind of place I used to have, where my heart felt settled and my mind clear.  

I do not have a home now, and I will not, for the next few months; I am entering approval and assignment, and I do not know where the ELCA will send me.  This year I am learning, and not very quickly, to be a turtle:  to pull inside when the world is stormy, to ask for help when I am on my back, to give myself a little extra time to learn, and most of all, to take my home with me, no matter where I may be going.

Perhaps this is my wilderness time, the exodus, a wandering in my life; there was so much of the Hebrew way of life that had to die, there in the desert when God dwelt among them.  Idolatry, and theft, and fear, and piling up great wealth and self-protection.  All of it God longed to release them from.  Perhaps that is this time in my life.

For now, I pull into the shell of me that is becoming my home, and I hope for a little rest.

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