You make me feel safe, you make me feel warm.
You make sure I'm warm when ever I'm cold.
When I'm with you I feel at home.
~ Lucy Spraggan 'Safe'
When I think of 'home', I think of my parents' house: busy day-to-day life, with home-cooked meals, growing up with three siblings in North Wiltshire. I am lucky to have a good relationship with my family, and though uni-grown independence makes going back in the holidays a little frustrating at times, overall there's an overwhelming comfort involved for me when I return home. Home is where I feel safe, accepted, and cared for. Over the years I've been able to find other places which feel like home: friends' houses and even uni - when I've been in the same town for five years it's not exactly surprising.
The song Safe by Lucy Spraggan is a love song, and is referring to a specific crush which Lucy had at the time of writing it. (Hence in my quote, I have omitted a line which is specifically romantic). However, that overall sense of the word 'home' I think hits the mark for me. We may not all find it in the same place. Some with our parents, some with our friends. Many of us find a home in our churches and our Christian groups. When we're with others in the name of and presence of God, we can find that sense of home and belonging. When we find a Christian community which shares our values and ideals, we feel safe to be who we are and to be accepted. In other words, we feel safe, warm, and at home.
I found my Christian home late into my uni course. In my first year, I had been disheartened to find that there was only really an evangelical presence on campus, when I was used to more Anglican settings. It just wasn't for me and I felt out of place with them. I didn't really look after that, and just quietly kept my beliefs. Then, just after my third year, in a new student house, I heard church bells the first Sunday morning I was there. The following week I went along to a service, not knowing what to expect, and I found a home.
Home can be found where we least expect it. And if you find your home with the people you spend time with, or with God, you may find that whenever you are you're home.
The trees of the Lord are well watered, the cedars of Lebanon that he planted. There the birds make their nests; the stork has its home in the junipers. The high mountains belong to the wild goats; the crags are a refuge for the hyrax.
Psalms 104:16-18 NIV
Written by Emi Clarke. Emi is a 24-year-old Chemical Engineering Finalist at Loughborough University. She's an avid video gamer, goes bouldering and is a member of her church choir.