“But Ma,” I protested, “I thought home was where we came from?”
“Home is where we’re going now,” Ma said, “and we’ll know it when we find it.”
Those lines, from Louis L’Amour’s short story, War Party spoke to me this week. In the story, a wagon train is heading to California and Bud’s (the speaker) father has been killed by Indians. Everyone figures that Ma will turn around and go back “home.” But Ma is determined to continue on their journey. She knows that “home” is not a physical place as much as it is a state of being.
For years, home was Thomas Berry Hall on the campus of Berry College. When we were forced to abandon that “home” we landed in Macon, Georgia, not by choice, but by necessity and convenience—we moved in with our son. Macon was never really “home” because it wasn’t our choice to be there. It was more like we were in exile.
We’ve been in Louisville for 3.5 weeks now and it is home. After thirty-eight months of feeling like vagabonds, we’re home. Yes, it is temporary, as we’ll probably be on the move again in three years after I finish seminary. Like Ma in the story, we knew it when we found it.