The Heart of Home

 

High school nights in the winter time were my complete definition of homey. As soon as the classroom clock turned from 3:04 to 3:05 p.m. I couldn’t wait to pop home, make a cup of cozy cocoa, and hop into a pair of fuzzy socks. I would snuggle up in the quiet oasis of my room, away from the cluttered slams of lockers and echoing voices in the hallways. The content scene of my afternoon ritual did not stay peaceful for long, as Instagram became increasingly popular during my time in high school. Those snowy winter nights matched the flurry of thoughts shooting from every direction in my headspace as soon as I pulled out my phone to scroll through social media.

Coming from the palm of my hand were images, videos, words, and flashing lights painting my face with transforming shades. These images and videos told me what I needed and what I did not have. Millions of likes on edited faces and bodies provoked taunts about my own face and my own body. Sometimes the taunts began with a single post, other times they derived from a small word, a pop-up ad, or a catch of my reflection on the screen. With each swipe, click, and scroll, my tranquil sense of home was rippled by the power of an Instagram feed. It was frightening how quickly my comfort levels were disturbed by the meaningless posts that invaded my sense of self like boulders plunging into glassy waters.

Although I knew deep within that I did not need to look the way the world wanted me to look, social media was constantly handing me trendy-looking blinders to cover up that rooted truth within my heart. It seemed so natural to mindlessly double-tap my way through the accounts I followed. With each little heart icon that appeared on a liked post, I was burying myself under media-provoked falsities that settled over my own perception of belonging. The posts did not bring me any closer to my identity, they instead led me into the dangerous waters of comparison and longing. The more I watched, the more I wished. The less intentional I was on social media, the less I paused to recognize my beauty as a daughter of the King.

On Earth we are all seeking a sense of home, a comforting belonging. We see promises of beauty and these promises are alluring, yet, He has chosen for us so much more than the world has promised. As Christians we are each trying our best to get to heaven one day and help others get to heaven. I often imagine heaven as this new and pristine location, a sort of untouchable mystery, a paradise that I would not recognize. Instead, we must focus on heaven as a home.

Heaven is this perfect, luminescent resting spot, but it is not just God’s home, it is your own. You, sister, were created with the irreplaceable image and likeness of Christ and walk with the presence of our Lord all around you. You are so beautiful not only because of God who created you, but because you were created with His abounding love and honor.

The next time you feel drowned underneath the world’s standards of beauty, remember that you do not belong to the standards of the world. Rest in the soothing promise that our Father has prepared an eternal home intricately for you. I invite you to read John 15:18-21. It is here the Gospel tells us to Whom we truly belong.