I graduated from high school with a class of 37 people. So I was, at once, terrified and ecstatic about heading off to university that fall.
Tears ran down my cheeks when my parents left me on the campus of Iowa State University. I felt lost in a sea of 25,000 faces. I didn’t know where I would fit in. I was terribly nervous about how I’d do in my classes. I missed my family, and I missed everything that felt familiar: my seat at the kitchen table, my pink comforter, the cracked sidewalks of a town where I’d lived my whole life.
Plus, I was burdened with all the “not enoughs” that many college freshmen experience. When my parents drove away from the dormitory parking lot, I could see the worry written on Mom’s face.
There was no such thing as texting back then — it was 1990 — so Mom couldn’t check in on me as much as she would have liked. But every week, down in the dormitory post office, there’d be a letter from home. In those letters from home, Mom would remind me who I was, and what I was made of.
I don’t remember what Mom wrote exactly, but I remember how I felt when I read her words. It was as if she were saying, “You are a Dukes girl. You are gonna make it!” It was her way of letting me know that I’m preapproved.
I cherished those letters from home.
Well guess what? That’s what the Holy Scriptures do.
St. Augustine said it like this:
“The Holy Scriptures are our letters from Home.”
Like Mom, letting me know I was a Dukes Girl, God is saying to you: “You are a Jesus Girl. Let me tell you what you’re made of. You are gonna make it.”
It’s all right there in the Bible, for any of us feeling a little homesick. The ancient text holds the mystery and the revelation and the redemption and the grace and the grit and the “you-go-girl” that we need from God. It’s His story, and it’s our story. And the more we get into His word, the more His word gets into us.
I don’t know where you’re at today. If you’re feeling lost in a sea of faces, if you feel forgotten, if you are missing the familiarity of home, or if you are burdened by the mess in your marriage or the drama at the office. Maybe, as this week begins, you are feeling a gazillion “not enoughs” crashing on top of you.
There’s a word for you, waiting in God’s letters from home. And until you get Home, you can find a Home in The Word.
He is delivering you the news your heart longs for.
Tell me about a verse or a passage that you return to … to remember who you are. Tell me what the Psalms teach you about lamenting. Tell me when the Word first came alive for you. Or tell me how you honestly struggle with the Bible — or with finding the time to read it. I look forward to meeting you in the comment box today!