I heard that Daughtry song on the way to church this morning. I like the song - sentimental in a rock 'n roll sort of way. As is apt to happen in my life, the sermon dealt with going home as well. The guest preacher was a young student from Russia. She talked about being far from home and separated from her mother and sister. She also explained that her family has a habit of shielding one another from their personal trials and pain, so as not to worry one another. Further separation.
It occurred to me that lots of us are unable to go home, to return to the place of our childhood. Sometimes it is too far or too costly to get there. Sometimes we put up walls that become too formidable to cross. Sometimes folks at home die. Sometimes we are estranged from our families through no fault of our own. Sometimes we don't remember how to get there. Sometimes the folks at home no longer recognize us. Sometimes there is simply no home to which to return.
It also occurred to me that even though we can't always go home, we still want to go there. Deep down inside, we long for that returning. So when we can't make it happen in the usual way, we create new homes. We put down roots and marry and buy houses and have children. We let someone love us and allow ourselves to love them back and build new communities for our hearts and our souls. And although it is never quite the same, it counts.