A seasoned missionary once said that she was very careful how she used the word ‘home.’ She would say, we are going to our ‘home in ____,’ and fill in the blank of the location where they were staying. At the time I didn’t quite understand this, but after our month in Brussels it really struck me.
There was one sweet family that arrived the day before we did, who had a daughter roughly Avonlea’s age, named Margaret. They also had two more behind her, so we there were instantly kids for her and Oliver to play with. This was good until we decided to go for a walk, since the sunshine would help get our days and nights straight. Avonlea promptly told me that it wasn’t nice for us to leave Margaret’s house. We shouldn’t leave our friend’s house, we should stay and play. She never stopped calling the ZavCentre ‘Margaret’s House’.
We’d be out for some reason or another, waiting for train, and I’d say to Avonlea something like, ‘When we get back home you are going to have a bath,’ or ‘I hope we make it back home before they serve dinner at 6:00.’ I’d have to quickly correct myself, saying, ‘I mean when we get back to the Zav Center.’ It was ‘home’ for a month, but how ‘home’ was it really?
There was one day when Avonlea said to me, ‘Mommy, can you go to our home in Rock Hill and get my scooter and helmet and bring it here?’ I had to explain to her that it would take a really long plane ride and once we get back to Rock Hill, we would be staying there for a while and not coming back to the Zav Center.
As our time drew to a close, we’d say, we are going home next week, or we are going to go home in a few days. One of our last days there, Avonlea said to me, ‘I want to go back to our home in Rock Hill, mommy.’ This brought tears to my eyes, because I knew that one day she’d say those words to me, and I will have to remind her that where we are is our home now, that we are not going back to our home in Rock Hill.
I know we are going to have to teach her that our home is in Christ, and he moves with us. To Belgium, to France, to Rock Hill, SC. Home is a tricky thing. It seems like it’s where your stuff is, or where you sleep at night, but I believe it is where we rest in Christ, and that will be wherever he calls us.
Thank you for your prayers and support. As hard as it is to know we only have a few months left, we are anxious to join the team on the field. If you’d like to be added to our support team, you can learn more about that here.
Here are some photos of the Zav Centre where we stayed in Belgium. There weren’t any pictures of our actual room, but the one pictured below was pretty close.
And the first sight of our rental house, where we live in Rock Hill. Probably the first home Avonlea will remember.