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A Homecoming to Remember

He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.  Revelation 21:4 NIV

Photo courtesy of pixabay.“Who lives here?”

“We do,” I said.

“How long have you lived here?”

“We live here together. Remember, I’m your wife.”

He stared until recognition crossed his face. “When can we go home?”

“We are home. This is where we live now.” Over and over, I gently prodded his memory.

Following a heart attack, a stroke, a fall that resulted in severe brain injury, and a lack of oxygen when his heart and lungs stopped functioning, my husband seemed a goner by medical staff. Miraculously, he survived, but he would need long-term care.

After four weeks, he walked into our home—a home he didn’t recognize. After several days, he began recalling the move to our house, and his questions changed.

“When did we leave the old house?”

“About nine years ago,” I responded.

“Where do we keep the soap?” Or shampoo, bowls, or countless other items used daily. We found them together.

One part of our routine he never questioned was our evening time of Bible reading and prayer. After I finished reading a Bible passage each night—and before we prayed and turned out the lights—he clasped my hand in his.

My husband’s need for outpatient therapy lasted only a few weeks. He quickly progressed from walker to cane to nothing but supervision. Gradually, he regained almost full independence. Bit by bit, most of his memory also returned. He moved from little long-term and almost no short-term memory to primarily short-term memory loss.

The summer following my husband’s hospitalizations, we took a short vacation. Although a refreshing change, it also proved exhausting. The closer we came to Kentucky on our return home, the more excited we grew. Finally, we crossed the state line. With joy in my heart, I echoed his spoken sentiment: “I’ll certainly be glad when we get home.”

Our experience pales in comparison to the rejoicing we’ll experience when we cross the threshold of our eternal home.

Jesus waits with open arms for you to come home. Are you ready?

(Photo courtesy of pixabay.)

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Diana Derringer

Diana Derringer, a former social worker and adjunct professor, writes for several publications. She teaches a middle school Sunday school class, sings in the choir, and participates in missions activities through her church. She and her husband enjoy traveling and serving as a friendship family to international university students. Visit her at www.dianaderringer.com.