Friday, August 28, 2009


It's going to be warm today, but as I write this I'm sitting outside and it is absolutely perfect. The sky is baby blue and I can see a few wispy clouds; one looks like a shark, and I detect the influence of my shark-obsessed 6-year-old on my imagination. The faintest of breezes feels wonderful on my summer-exposed skin. It's beautiful, and I am joyous being here. But I don't feel at home.

All my life I've felt out of place in this world, like I don't belong, like there has been some snafu and I ended up in the wrong line for my homeroom assignment. I have walked through the world with a sense of dis-ease, never quite comfortable and sometimes mad with longing for my true home, wherever that may be. I have wanted to escape from what is inescapable, in times of gladness as much as in times of sorrow.

Now, though, I begin to see that if I don't belong here then I can be a visitor, a traveler in search of adventure. When I travel it is the foreignness of my surroundings, the very fact of my not belonging that is a source of joy. I delight in being the outsider, the one who is grateful to be included by invitation rather than by right. I am not homesick because I know that home is steadily awaiting me at the end of my journey, whenever that may be. When I feel discomfited and far from home, it is because I am discomfited and far from home; my otherness is a given, neither to be mourned nor celebrated but rather simply stipulated.

So I will try to be a traveler in this world, to accept my otherness with grace, knowing that it is ultimately no more than an illusion because nothing, nothing can ever be other - nothing, nothing can ever be outside of God.

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