Psalm 35:1-10; Jeremiah 29:1-14; Mark 5:1-20

Photo by christian koch on Unsplash

One of my favorite movies is Garden State. There is a marvelous scene where the two main characters are sitting in a pool and they are talking about, “home” and “family.”

Andrew Largeman: You know that point in your life when you realize the house >you grew up in isn't really your home anymore? All of a sudden even though you >have some place where you put your shit, that idea of home is gone.

Sam: I still feel at home in my house.

Andrew Largeman: You'll see one day when you move out it just sort of happens >one day and it's gone. You feel like you can never get it back. It's like you feel >homesick for a place that doesn't even exist. Maybe it's like this rite of passage, >you know. You won't ever have this feeling again until you create a new idea of >home for yourself, you know, for your kids, for the family you start, it's like a cycle >or something. I don't know, but I miss the idea of it, you know. Maybe that's all >family really is. A group of people that miss the same imaginary place.

What resonates with me this morning is that line about how “home” is an idea that you create for yourself.

As I was reading these passages this morning this movie scene immediately popped into my head. In Jeremiah he's sending a letter to the people in exile and telling them create for themselves homes in Babylon. In Mark Jesus sends the healed demoniac back to his home country. Home is a theme that for whatever just jumped out of the text to me.

Home is not something that just happens. We cultivate it. We create it. Home can be anywhere! I'm watching my children create a sense of home at their respective universities. Sure, they love coming to my home for a visit, but there is a restlessness that is ever present because this house is no longer home for them.

I think there is something innate in us all to create a home. It's a reflection of the Divine. The first stories humanity told were about the Divine making a home for us. Now we reflect that every day.

In some sense we all find ourselves in exile. We await the eternal home. But until then, perhaps we would be wise to remember the letter of Jeremiah...

This is the Message from GOD-of-the-Angel-Armies, Israel’s God, to all the exiles >I’ve taken from Jerusalem to Babylon: “Build houses and make yourselves at home. “Put in gardens and eat what grows in that country. “Marry and have children. Encourage your children to marry and have children so >that you’ll thrive in that country and not waste away. “Make yourselves at home there and work for the country’s welfare. “Pray for Babylon’s well-being. If things go well for Babylon, things will go well for >you.”


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