Friday, July 20, 2007

My Childhood Home

This is another of those things where someone's running a carnival. And since this was something that is currently on my heart a lot, I thought I'd share.

When I was six, my family moved to the town of Laurel, MD so that my dad could become the Minister of Music and Youth at First Baptist Church of Laurel. We started out living in an apartment, but moved into our house about three months later. And while I have many, many very fond memories of that little yellow and green house in North Laurel, that's not the place I think of as "home" during the time we lived there. The place I think of is the church building. We were there so often (my mom taught school there for a while too) and spent so much time there that that building is really what I would consider to be my "childhood home."

I really just have pictures in my head of things:
- seeing how far we could roll a bouncy ball under the pews during adult choir practice
- sliding under the pews during adult choir practice
- rolling bouncy balls and sliding along pews during adult choir practice (do you see a theme here?)
- painting a rock for an Easter program (during adult choir practice) with a 102° fever
- Boogy "Hart Fall" (the PC name for "Boogy Fart Hall" where the "Boogy Fart" lived....long story...which, incidently, begins during adult choir practice)
- the 8" of cross that hung down into the baptistry
- the corner of the ledge by the elevator that was always broken off

It's where I got baptised, it's where I was commissioned to go overseas, it's where I met and married my husband...

It's where I grew up ( much as I ever will).

But in less than a month, we'll turn the keys over to the local police department for their new headquarters as our church family moves into a much-needed larger facility a few blocks away. I know that we need it (heck...VNB and I are the ones who took over the pastor's office for a Sunday School class for a while), and I'm really glad that we have a set of pastors who _aren't_ as tied to our current space as people like me are....but I don't know that it'll ever feel quite _right_ to be in the new building. It won't be "home" as much as our current location is. There will be new bells and whistles that will be nice, there will be plenty of classroom space for everyone with room to spare, and we won't need as many services because we'll all actually be able to fit in one room at the same time...but it won't be home. At least not for a while anyway.

I know, I know, a church is a group of people, not a building...but home is where the heart is, and my heart loves that place because it represents so much of my childhood (and life!) to me. And I'll be sad when it's gutted and it quits being part of the heavenly justice system to become part of the earthly justice system.

But, at least for now, the outsides will stay and I can still drive by and remember climbing the tree on the corner, and running through the snow and birdseed on the way to the car on my wedding day, and playing "escapee baby" on the fire truck jungle gym in the playground, and slicing open my knee on that same playground, and playing three different parts (at least two of which were male) in one Christmas cantata, and, and, and...


Rebekah said...

you sound a little ornery like me. I used to get bored in 'chapel' and once glued some books together.
Enjoyed reading your post

Owlhaven said...

Once during church when my dad was preaching and my mom was playing the organ, I stacked a tall pile of hymnals and tried to sit on it. I would have done it too, if the guy across the aisle hadn't grabbed me and sat me down in the midst of his family.