Thankful for Shelter

Tonight my seventeen-year-old is participating in a homelessness awareness project with her church youth group. They were supposed to sleep outside in cardboard shelters, but with the temperatures dipping to 32 degrees or lower, that part of the evening has been scrapped in favor of sleeping in the church building. As a mother, I am thankful for that prudent decision. As a pastor, my heart hurts for those who must sleep outside in the cold because they are homeless.

As I reflect on what my daughter is doing tonight, I am so thankful that I have a roof over my head. I am fortunate to have always had somewhere to go; I have never yet been truly homeless. Our family lives in a wonderful parsonage owned by the congregation my spouse serves. It was built in 1910 and is a large red brick two-story with more ample room for our blended family. The ceilings are high, the rooms are commodious, and the place has great character. It’s nestled in the foothills of orchard country and offers all the benefits of country living with modern conveniences.

It’s easy to take for granted all that we have. We have a warm home and a comfortable life. I am well aware that we have no guarantees; everything can change in an instant. Too many Americans know the pain of losing a home and/or a job and facing uncertainty and hardship. I am so grateful to have a place to call home and a family with whom to share it.

Right now, I’m going to go watch a movie with my husband. It’s going to be a quiet night of quality time together. Home Sweet Home–be it ever so humble or extraordinarily grant–don’t take it for granted. Give thanks for the blessings of home and shelter from the cold.

What about your home? What makes you grateful and happy?

Photo by Diana Parkhouse used under Creative Commons License. Thanks!



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