There are few places I call (or at least feel at) home. Even saying "places" is not incredibly accurate. Wes, Peyton, and I have lived in three cities and moved in and out of six different houses/apartments in the last seven years. I have no special attachment to any of the physical addresses, however we have made all of them our home. At the end of every day I feel at home only when all three of us are together.
My mom's is another "place" I feel I can go at ANYTIME. She moved into her house a little over 13 years ago and I technically never lived there. I went away to college two weeks after she and my sister moved in, however, whenever I have come back to Florence this is obviously my home.
My Granny's house is somewhere that I love to be. It is the one place that has always stayed consistent in my life. I have so many memories...trees where mine and my sister's names are carved, the garden that my grandaddy used to drag us out of bed to work in, the barn that no longer stands except for a few pieces that my cousin kept to frame the paintings she gave to the family, the catfish pond where we all "caught" huge 8 lb fish for dinner that night. The list goes on and on. There are some days I have these grand illusions of living on her land and resurrecting the garden that has in the last few years been bare. My dad kept it up for a while but with full time jobs and kids to raise, the grand patch of land that I remember as a girl just waits.
Wes's parents' is a "place" that feels like home. Deborah and Terry have lived in more houses than I can count! They have this fascinating hobby and talent for restoring old homes so you never know just when or where they will be any given amount of time. They say that Aberdeen MS is it for them, but we all secretly wonder, now that the house is restored, if they will be able to do it. However, no matter where they are or the amount of time they stay in one place, it ALWAYS feels like home.
The one place Wes and I have not had for a long time is a church home. We, as a couple, in some ways are like night and day when it comes to God, religion, church, etc. The main thing we agree on that we have always wanted and have had a hard time finding is a place where asking questions (you know really tough-out there-seriously doubting questions) is OK.
That is until now. The first Sunday I walked in Auburn First Baptist Church I felt, for lack of a better word, at home. I thought surely it was too good to be true. I am one that has always hated stereotypes, but I found myself thinking, we aren't "baptists"; we are not the type of people who identify with any one denomination. I even told the pastor that I actually tried really hard over the last several months to find something "wrong" with the community. The only thing I have been successful in finding at AFBC is a group of believers who make it a point of searching for God and serving others. It is a place where "knowing the right answer" doesn't exist. It is a challenging place where you do not have to leave your brain at the door in order to worship. It is not a place where you just "check off" church each Sunday. These people are out in the community of Auburn and Opelika serving people where they are and making a real difference. I would love to list names of all the members who have touched our lives in just a few short months, but I know I would leave someone out. Needless to say, we officially joined a few weeks ago and have never felt such a sense of belonging as we do now.