This afternoon I came home from work exhausted and fell into a deep sleep. Two hours later I woke suddenly from a dream. I was in a large church; it was stone and had many rooms. I had past knowledge of the church; I remembered rooms and secret passageways but when I searched for them they were either walled up or I could not find them. I knew my office was there, but it was not the office I currently work in. The walls of the church were high, very high and made of large, tan carved stone blocks. The rooms and inner courtyards were large and airy; beautiful. The sense I got was that it was familiar but no longer intimately known by me.
I thought I had discovered one secret passageway from long ago, but when I lifted the tiny access grate, there was a small pregnant cat sitting on a tiny shelf inside a clean, unused fireplace. I felt surprise at her presence and uncertain how to proceed. She sat motionless, and I slowly lowered the grate.
In one room, I watched two men tune guitars as they prepared to practice. I wanted to play with them, but knew I was not good enough. I had been good enough 20 years ago, but now would only be able to play simple chords to their advanced finger strumming. In another large room, two more men were preparing to play; again, I faced the same issue of past but not present knowledge or skill.
In a large courtyard I talked with one young man; we looked at the carvings that circled a young tree. I thought the carvings in the stone were Celtic or Catholic. They were old, ancient. But then, when I touched them, they were really just part of a grey rubber mat. Not special at all.
In another outdoor section a tall and handsome man was speaking with me. We were just getting to something interesting when his young son arrived with an extremely tall and handsome man. The son was as tall as his father; he had something private to share and they excused themselves from where we were. The very tall man remained. I realized he was the brother of the man I had just been speaking with. I asked him how tall he was and then apologized for my rudeness. He bent down, lightly touched my nose, and said yes, he was 6 feet 9. In reality he was much taller. He then threw a tire into the air, which spun in a large circle and I realized he controlled with his mind. He was darker skinned, Mediterranean, and I felt small next to him.
Then, I was with a Greek man. We talked for a few minutes and then his mother arrived. Suddenly we were outside in the sun, on a large concrete or stone area. It was sunny, beautiful and white. Everyone but me was dressed in black and white. He was a minister and he took his mother up the four or five stairs to the front of the stone area to introduce her to the congregation. After telling everyone she was his mother, they came back down the stairs to join six other men and women, and shouted “Opa!” They started dancing a traditional Greek dance, the ladies lifting their skirts. The mother lifted hers up so high I could see her white granny panties, her black stockings and garters. I thought about how unashamed she was, and how happy she was to be dancing with her son. I saw that they were a family and loved each other.
Then I woke up. My immediate thought was “I am emotionally homeless.” I felt grief that I am alone, an outsider, an observer but not a participant. I am in the church, looking for my place. I remember what was, but am not part of what is. I do not know what is to come. I have memories of the past, but the present is oddly unfamiliar. I have no home. My sadness is acute. I am the outsider, the observer, hungry for place but not finding one. I have a homeless heart.
The tall man was an angel, of that I am convinced. Others might have been angelic, particularly the brother of the tall man. I think the church symbolizes my life. I have a deep faith in God, a faith that crosses cultural boundaries and continues to be refined. The church was large, beautiful, complex, intriguing. I loved it and wanted to explore; but I also could not find a place for me. I felt alone.
I wonder when, if ever, I will find a home again. The odd restlessness of my heart continues. I love my desert home, land, trees and quieter living outside of the city. I love the peace God has given me in a time of great upheaval. And yet, I yearn for something I cannot name or find. My homeless heart hungers, and I feed it food or media or busyness. I keep looking for where I can rest and truly be home.