There is no one at home tonight at the old home place. No light in the window, no fire in the hearth, no friendly voices of welcome as in days gone by. Once there was a mother's prayer, a father's strong arm and the light of love and faith, and the aroma of life, where now only barren and void stands the old homestead, beat upon by the rain of summer, the winds and storms of winter, and torn by the lashing torrent of the passing of time.
Abandoned and alone it stands like the cast off shell of something that once was alive, slowly moldering and decaying and returning unto the dust like the shells of those whose voices once caused its' rooms to vibrate and resound with laughter.
Where are the former tenants of so forlorn a place? Is there no one to light a fire in the hearth? Is there no one to put a light in the window? Is there no one who cares that I have come home from the wars – the battle between good and evil; of right and wrong; of righteousness and unrighteousness? Is there no one to welcome me and succor me? No! Time was, time has been, time is gone, time waits for no man. One by one I have watched them go down the valley to meet the lover of their souls. It is said that life is forever, and there is no end of love. Ah! What blessed truth! Our Lord and Savior said: “I am the resurrection and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live, and whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die.” John 11: 25, 26.
They believed and they trusted, and so they occupy stately mansions in a far off country. Jesus said: “In my Father's house are many mansions. If it were not so I would have told you.” John 14: 2.
I shall turn and go forever from the old home place which is abandoned and alone, and torn by the passing of time. Return to your dust from whence you came. Never again will a light shine from your window to light my pathway. Never again will fire burn in your hearth to warm my soul, never again will I hear on earth those voices so dear to me. Fall into your dust ye abandoned and desolate relic of time and space, for these mortals have put on immortality.
“O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?” 1 Corinthians 15: 55. Know ye not that on the resurrection morning the trumpet of God shall sound and the dead in Christ shall arise?
In that far off country, in my Father's house there is a light shinning to guide me home. There is an inextinguishable fire of God's love and mercy burning on the hearth. There are those who are waiting to welcome me home from the wars; the battle of good and evil; right and wrong; righteousness and unrighteousness. When my life's work is over, when I have fought a good fight, when I have run the race, then I too shall make my way down the valley to meet the lover of my soul. I shall walk up the lane to my Father's house and receive the welcome of my Lord, Then I hope to see the ones I cannot see tonight.
Father, if you see mother first, tell her that her prayers were not in vain. Tell her that I love her, and will be coming home from he wars one day soon. Mother, if you see dad first; tell him that his labors were not in vain. Jesus, tell those I love that I love you, because you first loved me and gave yourself for me. Tell them that I want to work for you and serve you a while longer here on earth so that I might tell the good news of your amazing grace to save the lost, and bear fruit for your glory, but some day we will meet at the marriage supper of the Lamb and renew old acquaintances and rejoice forever in the presence of our Savior in the indestructible mansions on high.
Dedicated to the memory of my father and mother at home with the Lord.