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Pat HaggertyBy Pat Haggerty

I am not a devoted fan of “American Idol” but I have watched it in the past.  One of my favorite winners was Phillip Phillips, who made the song, “Home” very popular.  I got to thinking about other songs about home.  There is “Home” by Michael Bublé and “I’ll be Home for Christmas” made popular by Bing Cosby.  There is the other Christmas favorite, “There’s No Place like Home for the Holidays.”

In Phillips’ version, one of his lyrics say:  “Know you’re not alone ‘cause I’m going to make this place your home.”  Another line says:  “Settle down.  It’ll all be clear!” In Bublé’s song, he just “wants to go home.”  And, certainly, at Christmas there is definitely “no place like home.”

We always want to go there.  It is usually a place of warmth, peace and fond memories.  There are many connotations of home and most of us can share varied sentiments about home.  We can recount memories, images and sensations that call home to mind.  Unfortunately, not everyone may have these positive feelings, but I am not going to consider any negative aspects right now.

If we “settle down” as Phillips suggests, it may all become clear to us after all.  In thinking of last Sunday’s gospel reading this makes perfect sense.  Our true home is to be found in our eternal reward with God in one of His “dwelling places.”  Jesus tells us in John’s gospel for the fifth Sunday of Easter:  “Do not let your hearts be troubled.  You have faith in God; have faith also in me.  In my Father’s house there are many dwelling places.  If there were not, would I have told you that I am going to prepare a place for you?  And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back again and take you to myself, so that where I am you also may be.  Where I am going you know the way.” (14: 1-4)

There it is---Jesus is telling us to have faith, not be troubled, “settle down.”  Having faith in God is the biggest part.  We have to forego ourselves and submit to the will of Him who made us.  We must follow the path that Jesus has shown us.

As the rest of the gospel tells us, “. . .whoever believes in me will do the works that I do, and will do greater ones than these, because I am going to the Father.” (John 14:12)

So, going home is part of God’s plan for us.  He has taught us through the works of His Son, and He has directed the Spirit to guide us.  If we are faithful to Him, we will return home to the dwelling place that has been prepared for us.  Alleluia!

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