My parents have moved into a new place, a retirement community with meals and health care and assisted living as they might require it. My mother’s dementia brought them to this juncture. They loved their old home and their yard, and didn’t want to leave it. Today we close on the sale of it. My older brother will represent them at the closing. They lived in the home for over 30 years, and it was the only home their grandchildren knew as “Grandma and Grandpa’s house.” Lots of folks have traveled this path, and lots of folks know the deep variety of emotions that accompany it- and the work.
But the one I will lift up is thanksgiving:
“Almighty God how grateful we are for the blessing of a good home. For the way in which that shelter has been the loom with which the threads of celebrations, holidays, meals, conversations, laughter, greeting, grief, tears, silence, sleep, sickness, health, music, reflection, prayer, faith, hope and love have woven us together as family and community. We thank you for the blessing of a good home. Now bless those who enter a new chapter, and may your Spirit teach us that our hearts are never home unless we are at home in you. We pray for the homeless, for those who do not know where they will find shelter tonight, for refuges, and for those whose homes are marked by violence, abuse or loneliness. We pray for those who are trying to make a home, and for those who must leave their homes, and for those who enter a new chapter. We pray remembering how Jesus said “Follow me.”
“As they were going along the road, someone said to him, “I will follow you wherever you go.” 58 And Jesus said to him, “Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests; but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay his head.” 59 To another he said, “Follow me.” But he said, “Lord, first let me go and bury my father.”60 But Jesus said to him, “Let the dead bury their own dead; but as for you, go and proclaim the kingdom of God.” 61 Another said, “I will follow you, Lord; but let me first say farewell to those at my home.” 62 Jesus said to him, “No one who puts a hand to the plow and looks back is fit for the kingdom of God.”
Luke 9: 57-62