if home is where your heart is…


San Diego is what I refer to as my hometown, where I grew up. I’m visiting “home” right now and it feels great to be back. There are a whole lot of people in Southern California who know me and love me and I certainly love them! I also love this city – I love the geography, the weather, the culture, and I enjoy the familiarity.

BUT I have to say, I miss Texas. My life is there now. I am happy to be “home for a visit, but I don’t have any desire to stay. I want to be in Texas. God has given me a heart for the people he has placed in my life there and I look forward to getting back! (Though I’d really like to find a way to take my San Diego beaches with me – yes, they are mine!)

I’ve been thinking recently about the expression: “Home is where your heart is.” If that is the case, where is my home? It’s not just here (in San Diego). It’s not just in Texas. My home is in the Kingdom of God. It is not limited to one place on this earth. It’s not even limited to this lifetime.

Jeff Lewis (interim pastor at my family’s church and Global Studies professor at CBU) made a statement in his sermon this morning that resonated with me: “Christianity is a nomadic religion. We must move when God tells us to move, plant when God tells us to plant, etc. People have often called me a nomad because I’m always going somewhere. It’s often credited to my personality but I think it’s something bigger. God has developed it in me and ingrained it into my personality as I have walked with Him. It wasn’t always there. I am no longer content to call just one place my home or to live from day to day in a routine that keeps me from risking and reaching out to the world around me. There is a whole world of people out there who need to hear the Truth and whenever and wherever God leads, I will go and I will speak truth and I will live truth! I’ve never had a lot of money and I don’t know that I ever will, but I am richly blessed! God has taken me to places and PEOPLE that will forever be in my heart. I consider them all home:

San Diego is my hometown! It’s motto is “America’s Finest City” and I’ve yet to find any evidence against the validity of that statement. Who doesn’t love San Diego? We have beach, mountain, desert, and amazing weather! My only complaint is the expense! It’s a special place to me because I grew up here. I spent many wonderful and many very hard times (all of which were very formative for me) here with my family and many special friends, who over the years became family! It’s a place that no matter where I am in life, I can come back and be welcomed with open and loving arms.

Riverside, CA is my birthplace and I found myself back for four years of college. Cal Baptist had so much to do with the formation of who I am today. My heart was shaped and molded there in so many ways! Lifelong friendships were developed while sharing life-shaping experiences!

Dallas / Fort Worth, TX is my newest and current home. I never would have thought I’d end up there for a portion of my life, but God led me there and I LOVE my life and those in it! I miss it when I’m away! I can’t wait to uncover more and more of what God has in store for me there in the days to come!

Vietnam is where God opened my eyes to many things I saw His might and power as I’d never seen before. I saw more deeply that He is holy and worthy of all praise and it became clearer than ever before what life is without Him… Meaningless and hopeless. God developed in a me a passion and a deeper sense of responsibility to take the message of the hope I hold to a world that is living hopelessly.

India is where God showed me the pit of nothingness He had pulled me out of. He showed me how futile life is without him and the destructiveness involved in placing anything above Him. It was there that God further developed in me a passion to share the value and purpose He gives us as we live following Him.

In all of these places God has taught me to love, to give, to pray, to wait, to serve, to give up myself. What a blessing.

Being back in CA for this visit continues to be filled with special moments and it’s been a great reminder of the transformation God is continually doing in my life. Just two nights ago I was able to spend some time with the girls I lived with my first 3 years of college. If anyone can tell you about how drastically God has changed me, they can! We had some good laughs over it this week and I’ll just say right now that God is amazing and definitely has a sense of humor – one more reason that I love Him! My life is far from boring. Anytime you need to hear a story or have a good laugh give me a call. I’ve got plenty stored up to share with you! :o)

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