Home Is A Lot More Than What Fits In A Truck

There’s a U-haul behind us.

I will be home someday, and when I am, the U-haul’s not coming.

We’ve been planning this move for a long time, still I feel like it snuck up on me. The details of up-nesting are upsetting, bordering pure torture and filled with absolute mayhem.

“Where’s the permit? I put it right here a minute ago.”

“Do you think I’ll need these 1 million and 54 boxes of family pictures?”

“Is there clean underwear anywhere?”

The ritual of packing is like folding thousands of memories, clearing some out while holding some next to our hearts because we don’t want to let them go. Moving shakes out the cobwebs of life, discarding, lingering, refolding them and placing them lovingly on the shelf.

We’ve moved from country to country four times. We’ve travelled to over forty countries. This move from the midwest to the east with a U-haul bringing the piano from my dad, the old car from Phil’s mom, and the momentos of babies and their babies in the crowded truck cab seems at this point a bit ridiculous.

I mean, do we really need this stuff, and where are we going to put it all? Phil reminds me of how little we own, and in the wide scope of things, he is right. The majority of our things have nostalgia. Much of it gifted nostalgia.

Seriously, who could toss the painted plate from Venice our Italian neighbor gave? I never loved the plate, but I did love her. Or the freebie wooden chest off the street in Germany, its character marked with gauged doors. Even more, the hand embroidered cloth from a Croatian student, whose name I can’t remember, but I can still see his smile.

And so it tags behind, groaning with weight, an orange and silver truck with U-haul painted across the side.

This transition holds promise of endings, and I much prefer beginnings.

I’ve taken special comfort from words Jesus spoke to His disciples, grooming, nurturing and comforting them for days ahead. Perhaps they felt the uncertainty of not knowing, or the uneasy in-between because Jesus started with, “Let not your heart be troubled.”

“In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.” John 14:2-3 (NKJV)

There is a longing put there by the Creator to be home. Since the Garden of Eden, where home held only the paradise of perfection, to the day we see Jesus face to face or in the clouds, we long for a dwelling of safety and peace. The funny thing is like in every area of life, we so willingly exchange it for something of less value. Bigger, better, sleeker, or more accommodating. Almost as if that place on earth is god, or a piece of our god.

The house we are moving to needs some work, a lot of paint, and a good bit of love before it will feel like home. My mind expected a different sort of all in order, ready-to-go reward for a lot of years of living. But then, the Holy Spirit convicted me of putting a someday expectation of retirement as if it was heaven on earth, a god of arrival. And of course, it is not.

As we go through a lot of stress, decisions, and figure out life in a different context, I remember Jesus has made His home in my heart. Dwelling is what He is good at. He ardently desired to dwell in the midst of His people throughout the Old Testament. That was what the tabernacle was about. Then came the magnificent temple, a home in which man could meet God. They were just representations of something better.

So while my worldly house is dragging across the USA in a U-haul, my dwelling place remains stable, where it has been since Jesus came to live there. I’m at home with Jesus wherever this body is. And so, this tugging of the U-haul and its strings to my heart are another reminder of a more wonderful beginning. These emotions are the proof that the best is yet to come, and each day that passes, I’m getting closer.

For someday, I truly will be home, and I’m not hauling a U-haul behind me.

30 Replies

  1. Rebecca Thesman Reply

    Love this post! Safe travels and hope your “temporary” home turns out to be a place of abundant joy.

  2. J.D. Wininger Reply

    Ecclesiastes 3:11 is one of my favorite verses, as it reminds me that I am just a visitor here in this world. I long to be home, one day soon I pray.

    • Sylvia Schroeder Reply

      I kept thinking of that song, “I’ve got a mansion just over the hilltop…” Thanks again J.D.

  3. B. Harder Reply

    thought you ;moved recently from your house to an apartment near Advant. Where are you headed now?

    • Sylvia Schroeder Reply

      It’s kind of a long process. We are still at Avant, but getting our stuff to the house we bought in Virginia and doing work on it for moving permanently in September. Thanks for reading and commenting!!

  4. Karen van voorst Reply

    What a great post & a good reminder that this world is not our home. Safe & healthy travels to you both.

  5. Linda Lou Brucato Reply

    Great reflection (as always)! Happy you guys will be closer to NC!

    • Sylvia Schroeder Reply

      Ah, so grateful we have some people we know not toooooo far away!

  6. Mary Jane Casablanca Reply

    Dear Sylvia – This really touched me, as Cas and I have moved 23 times in 58 years of marriage. I learned long ago that we are indeed “strangers and pilgrims” in this world, every move bringing us closer to our ultimate home with our Saviour. Now, as Cas’ s Parkinson’s disease worsens, we are looking at the possibility of another move, waiting for the Lord to point us in the way we should go and for Him to open the door to another unknown. I love what the Bible says about Abraham – “he went out, not knowing where he was going.” All moves are like that – even when we know the address we’re going to, we really have no idea “where we are going” until after we get there! Praying that your move will be blessed by His grace and that your new home will soon be a comfortable one.

    • Sylvia Schroeder Reply

      Mary Jane, it is so good to hear from you. I wasn’t aware of Cas’ Parkinson’s. I am so sorry, I know that is a difficult road to travel. Thank you so much for reading and commenting. I appreciate it so very much. I have also been reading in Genesis about Abraham’s travels. I noticed he had all his possessions, but I’m guessing he could afford a moving company…You have blessed me today as I consider your thoughts, “he went out, not knowing where he was going.” Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

  7. Lona Youderian Reply

    Thank you, Sylvia … I love the way you zero in on the thoughts and perspectives of this subject…excellent reminder and helps center our thoughts rightly. Blessings to you both in your new place.

    • Sylvia Schroeder Reply

      Thanks Lona. I am always honored by your reading and commenting.

  8. Allyson Alderfer Reply

    Home is where the heart is!! So glad that I can still read your blogs no matter where we both live! You two are very special to us! I’m so glad that you were able to visit us in Alaska and I hope to see you again sometime!

    • Sylvia Schroeder Reply

      Thanks Allyson. Actually we will be back and forth until mid-September. Phil will not retire till November, so who knows? From one end of the country to another our paths may cross!

  9. Denise Bruner Reply

    I loved this most recent post of yours. Thanks for sharing your feelings and insights as you make another move. I know from experience how each move tugs on our emotions. It’s always good to remember that this world is not our home; thanks for your words.

    • Sylvia Schroeder Reply

      You would understand that well. This world is not my home. Thanks Denise. You taking the time to read and respond means a lot to me! Hope you are well and nesting in spite of Covid’s up-nesting.

  10. Gwynn Reply

    We too are getting ready for a big move. Putting our house up for sale and moving to Gulf side of Florida. Perhaps we can get together as “southerners”. I’ll pray for you as I struggle with my own purging and energy required for our transitions

    • Sylvia Schroeder Reply

      Oh my. Another big one. Yes, the struggle is real! Thanks Gwynn for reading and commenting. May Jesus guide and give you strength for the journey!

  11. Beth Menezes Reply

    Ok this side of eternity, with the persons we hold dear growing in number, time apart from family tugging at the heart,… I do not imagine how we will manage do similar to you in a couple of years!!!!
    But I can fully appreciate not having to pack nor pull a U-haul to our real home:-) !!
    God Bless you in this translation!!!

    • Beth Menezes Reply

      *On this…
      *God bless you in this transition.

  12. Sharon Cianci-Scott Reply

    Oh my dear friend, yet another move!
    It’s 28yrs since we last saw each other…..looking forward to glory when we’ll have a lovely long catchup !! (Please lord!). Enjoy the move, the of making another house home for your darling. Xxx

  13. Jeannie Waters Reply

    Sylvia, I love your moving story and appreciate the wisdom you share that God dwells within believers, and one day we will dwell with Him in heaven. I’m praying now for your move.

  14. Kristen Hogrefe Parnell Reply

    Great analogy! I can relate to you on moving … My husband I just bought our first home together this year, and moving is a chore!

    • Sylvia Schroeder Reply

      Thanks Kristen for responding. You are right. Moving is a chore!

  15. Katherine Pasour Reply

    Wow! What wonderful memories you must have of all those journeys. But you have reminded us that the most important journey is the one where we go home to be with Jesus. Not only will we not need the U-haul, we won’t be carrying any of the baggage this world has burdened us with. Enjoyed your message.

    • Sylvia Schroeder Reply

      And won’t that be sweet?! Thanks so much for reading and commenting!

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