Home (part 2): Not There Yet

TO START

Have you ever felt homesick? How old were you? Where were you visiting or living? What did you miss about home? Encourage all group members to share.

 

DISCUSSION

  • Why does the Christian experience homesickness here on earth? How does that manifest itself?
  • How might homesickness be valuable? What does it remind us of?
  • What if we're not experiencing homesickness? Why might that be? What could we do to stir it up in our hearts?
  • What's going on in your life right now that reminds you you're not home yet? Have each group member share something, either something personal or something they've witnessed.
  • What might tempt us to make this place our home? What would it look like to put down roots here in an unhealthy way?

 

SCRIPTURE READING

Read Hebrews 11:1-16.

If your name were in this list, what would it say you did "by faith"? What about the way you're living your life shows that you're seeking a homeland?

 

PRAYER

In the last chapter of the last book of the Bible the apostle John prays, "Come, Lord Jesus." It's a prayer for the homesick.

Identify reasons you want Jesus to come back. Tell Jesus those reasons in prayer. After each reason say together as a group, "Come, Lord Jesus."

 

FOR FUN AND KNOWLEDGE

According to Everydayhealth.com, here's a list of ways for college freshman to deal with homesickness:

  • Realize homesickness is a normal feeling.
  • Allow time to get used to your new home environment.
  • Talk about your feelings with friends, family, a resident assistant, or counselor.
  • Post pictures and things from home in your room.
  • Make plans to visit home, keeping in mind that you will be returning to school.
  • Get involved in campus activities.
  • Don't ignore your feelings or try to drown them by drinking alcohol, taking drugs, or participating in any type of risky behavior.
  • Learn what helps you relax — it might be deep breathing exercises, music, or exercise.
  • Be realistic when it comes to your expectations about college. Remember that you must relax and play a bit in addition to studying, or you'll burn out. Structure your time and work toward finding a healthy balance.

Are any of these suggestions helpful for the Christian dealing with homesickness? Are any of them unhelpful or even destructive?