On Friday October 4, at approximately 8:00 p.m., our daughter,
Starkville district superintendent the Rev. Dr. Embra Jackson is pictured with his daughter Katelyn.
Katelyn and I stepped onto the Starkville High School football field as a part of the 2013 homecoming celebration. As I looked at our lovely youngest child and tried not to step on her gown, I reflected on what homecomings mean to so many of us, especially in our churches.
A recent article in the Shaeffer's Chapel U.M. Church newsletter offers some thoughts on church homecomings. I have included some of the article that their pastor, Curtis Bray, wrote as our "thought of the week."
"Webster's Dictionary defines "home" as "the place where one lives" or "a place thought of as home or a place of origin. To "come" has many definitions, the most intriguing being, "to arrive or appear," or "to be available" and "to recover consciousness." Homecoming means all these things. It is a time of recovering a consciousness of this place where we find our life. It is being at ease with each other, and being available to one another in this place in which we have found a new beginning. For those who have been away, it is a time to "appear."
Homecoming may remember the past, but it looks to the future. It is a time to share our hopes and desires with those who have been a part of our past. Visions of things to come are discussed in the midst of committing ourselves to growing in love, because we care and you count.
As you and your churches celebrate your homecomings, I pray that you will be as proud of your accomplishments as I was standing on the football field with my daughter. I also hope and pray that you will remember that because your church is on God's team they will be victorious--"All who are victorious will inherit all these blessings, and I will be their God, and they will be my children" -- Revelations 21:7.