Home is where the heart is

We’ve just landed back on French soil after a wonderful week seeing lots of family followed by a week to recuperate in Norfolk after seeing said family.

It was busy but so so good.  Lots of special memories created.  Here are the highlights:

  • Trip to Bruges (only 45 mins away from Lille)
  • Dinner, coffee and lunch with special friends in Canters
  • Meeting our wonderful nephew for the first time (he lives in Japan)
  • Meals, coffees, cups of tea, good wine, games, chats, prayers, walks, songs and so so much fun with mums, dads, sisters, brothers, in-laws, uncles, aunties and cousins
  • Playing Sardines with nephews and nieces
  • Crazy weekend in London for sister-in-law-to-be’s ‘hen don’t’
  • Holiday at ‘Cressy’, Burnham Overy Staithe
  • Time to read
  • Fish and Chips at Wells-next-the Sea
  • Walks to the creek at sunset

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Needless to say we had a wonderful few weeks holiday and didn’t want to leave.

It’s hard to describe the emotions but our lovely house in Mouvaux, Lille isn’t quite home yet.  All our belongings are here but our hearts aren’t quite yet.  “I don’t want to go back” I admitted to Rog in the car as we journeyed home, his reply was a HUGE comfort “neither do I” he said.  Phew, I’m not the only one. We considered pulling up to our wonderful house in Canterbury and telling our friend who now lives there it has all been a mistake and we’d like our home back now thank you very much, out you go buddy. But as neither of us have jobs in the UK anymore we figured we’d just go straight to Folkstone have a KFC and be on our way with our sad little faces and hearts.

Amazingly though as the ‘Tunnel sous la Manche’ pulled out into a darkening, flat, industrial, let’s be honest, rather ugly northern France my heart was glad.  Not an “I’m home” kind of gladness, but a peace nonetheless. “It’s gonna be ok” my heart said. What a relief.

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If home is where the heart is we are currently homeless, gypsy-esque, heart-wanderers.  Or, as a friend said to me today I could look at it rather more optimistically and say that my heart is in two places. It’s a bit like those necklaces you had as a kid that you shared with a best friend to remind each other that you were besties forever.  Right now one half is in Canterbury and the other is in Lille.  My heart and home are finding their way through the emotions.  I don’t know if they’ll ever truly settle in Lille but that doesn’t mean it won’t be home and I can’t love it.

The Holy Bit

I guess Jesus must have known a heart/homeless-ness, I mean He left the most beautiful city that ever will exist to come to this funny little planet where He was poor, hated and eventually killed.  Our small move across a little pond seems rather insignificant in comparison.  Thank God that when we put our trust in Him we can have peace, hope and a home for our hearts.

“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope” Jer 29v11

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding.  In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths” Prov 3v5-6