The settled happiness and security which we all desire, God withholds from us by the very nature of the world: but joy, pleasure, and merriment, He has scattered broadcast. We are never safe, but we have plenty of fun and some ecstasy. It is not hard to see why. The security we crave would teach us to rest our hearts in this world and pose an obstacle to our return to God: a few moments of happy love, a landscape, a symphony, a merry meeting with our friends, a bathe or a football match, have no such tendency. Our Father refreshes us on the journey with some pleasant inns, but will not encourage us to mistake them for home. ~ C.S. Lewis
I just returned from a vacation full of joy and pleasure and merriment. I listened to the haunting song of the humpback whale and was amazed to see puffins riding the waves next to the frolicking sea otters. I hiked in a mystical rain forest and watched a black bear catching salmon for his dinner. I listened to a great Indie/Folk singer strum an old Jo Dee Messina tune:
Been singin’ for my rent and singin’ for my supper
I’m above the below and below the upper
I’m stuck in the middle where money gets tight
But I guess I’m doin’ alright
I sang along (softly):
I’m all, I’m all, I’m alright
It’s a beautiful day not a cloud in sight so I guess I’m doin’ alright
o – oh, o – oh, I’m alright
Got a good old friend here with me tonight and I guess I’m doin’ alright
My heart was happy and I was, indeed, doin alright. Yet, in the midst of good friends and good times and good weather, I found, inside myself, a longing for home. That’s always the way it is with me. In spite of the many pleasant inns, I eventually long for the comfort of my own bed that’s just the right amount of soft, and my pillow that perfectly cradles my head. But beyond that, I long for my true home.
I want more than a vacation or an adrenalin rush or a temporary cure for the common life. I want the settled happiness and security of home. And one sweet day, I’ll have it.