After you’ve been a part of YWAM for a while, or any missions-focused organization, your idea of “home” may be a little different than the normal definition. Home might not be the place where you were born, or where you grew up, or even where you’ve spent the most amount of time in your life.
I recently visited family and friends on the mainland where my husband and I celebrated our marriage in our childhood homes. It was a wonderful time of refreshing and rest, but my heart was being nagged by something the whole time. It was a feeling of homesickness – but that didn’t make sense because we were home, technically. We were with our family and our friends, at our local churches, and at our favorite restaurants.
We spoke of these places as our homes, we settled into life in them for a few weeks and it felt natural to be back in the place that we grew up, surrounded by the people who raised and shaped us. But we weren’t home. It wasn’t even that I was just missing the beauty of Hawaii, or the community we have there – which I was. It was something different.
My time in ministry and YWAM has shown me a new way of looking at what the word “home” means to me. It’s not the place where I grew up, and it’s not the house that I have the keys for. Home for me is when I’m in the middle of God’s will. Being back in Texas and Ohio was great, but it’s not where God has called us in this season.
Right now, God’s will for my husband and I is to be in Kona, Hawaii. So this is home. But someday He’s going to call us somewhere else – either for a short season of a couple months, or for fifteen years – and that will be home.
There’s a blessing and protection in being right in the middle of God’s will for us, and that creates an atmosphere of provision and safety; the same things you come to expect from your home.
This untraditional home might be uncomfortable or not what we think it should be. I’ve been home when I was sleeping on the hardwood floor of a small church in Europe and I’ve been home on a rocking ship that was sailing away from a hurricane. I’ve been home in a spacious hundred-year-old converted hotel in Berlin and in a single room in Hawaii.
The common thread in all of those is that it was where God wanted me.
He wanted me to be on the floor of that small church, because the next day we went and ministered at one of the largest music festivals in the world.
He wanted me on that ship because it needed to be welcomed to the YWAM family and prepared for a lifetime of bringing medical care to the isolated.
He wanted me in Berlin to be a part of the awakening the city was going through as it warmed up to the idea of God again.
And He wants me in Hawaii to be a part of telling the stories of hope and the love of Jesus in the most remote locations in the Pacific.
Maybe home to you is the place you grew up in. Maybe it’s where you’ve moved for college and found a whole new world of friends and community. Maybe home is where your kids were born and raised. Maybe home isn’t a physical place, but a spiritual one. My houses have looked different over the years, but home for me looks like His heart.
Where is home for you? What happens when God asks you to leave it to go somewhere else? Is your security and belonging attached to a physical place or to His heart?
By Brooke McCown
Port YWAM Kona Communications Staff