“Home is behind, the world ahead…”

Do you remember the shire, Mr. Frodo?

                             -Samwise Gamgee

This last week has been an entirely crazy, awesome week. I’ve honestly been on the go since Wednesday night but I wouldn’t have spent it with anyone other than who I was with (You know who you are 😉 ). Due to the fact that I was behind and tired I decided to spend the afternoon and evening inside. I caught up on some work and have been in the middle of a massive movie marathon.

I started with When a Stranger Calls, moved on to the extended edition of The Return of the King, and now I’m hitting’ 88 mph with Back to the Future.

It was amidst my 4 hour trek through Lord of the Rings that I began to think about something. On the edge of Mount Doom, Sam and Frodo are nearing the end of their journey but the massive weight of their trials has completely crushed them. The burden of their calling had worn them down to their last piece of energy. They were facing the fires of their journey and all hope seemed to be lost. In this moment Sam says to Frodo,

Do you remember the Shire, Mr. Frodo?

It was in the worst moment of Frodo’s journey that his only friend around reminded him of the very point of their journey. Samwise was there to show him the end goal at the end of their hope. He reminded him of his home, his happiness, and his source of peace.

It’ll be spring soon. And the orchards will be in blossom. And the birds will be nesting in the hazel thicket. And they’ll be sowing the summer barley in the lower fields… and eating the first of the strawberries with cream. Do you remember the taste of strawberries?

I started the day out by reminiscing on the last 5 years of my life (As I always seem to be doing lately) and it’s amazing just how far I’ve come from “home”. In my world, home is relative to wherever I lay my head at night but I started this journey of adulthood at 18 in Florida. I graduated High School, moved on to college, and now here I am in my Senior year.

As most, or many of you know, the last 5 years have been incredibly dark. In fact, I’d reckon to say that they’ve been the darkest years of my 23 year existence. I can’t even begin to describe to you how hard yet rewarding they have been. What I can say is that I kind of felt and feel like Frodo on the edge of Mount Doom. Crushed by the weight of all that I have done and experienced yet someone by my side reminding me of hope.

Walking into my Senior year I was determined to hold on to the loner life. I wanted nothing to do with big groups of people (still kind of don’t) nor did I care too much about having any friends at all. Senioritis set in but instead of being done with schoolwork I was done with life. I didn’t want to die I just didn’t want to invest. I didn’t want to risk emotional loss, more scar tissue around my heart, and the overall frustration of dealing with my failures and other people’s failures as well. I suppose it’s safe to say that God had a different plan.

Within a few weeks I found myself consistently and constantly hanging out with a group of friends. I started finding joy and genuine happiness with these people. Maybe life wasn’t going to be so awful after all?

Weeks passed and I found that my heart was being taken (in a good way). I won’t dive in to all of the details at this very moment (I’ll save that post for a later date) but suffice it to say that someone came along and subtly reminded me of “the shire”.

Corny, I know but it’s true. It’s amazing how God works and reminds you of the simple truths in life. The darkness can be so heavy at times but God has always been faithful to litter my path with light. Not enough to show me the end destination but just enough to show me where my next step will take place. I’m simply trying to place my trust and rest in Christ. He knows what He’s doing and He has incredibly blessed my life recently.

I’m excited for the future but I’m living in the now. I’m trying to enjoy the Shire before I have to set out on another adventure facing my personal giants. God has always been faithful to me and I’m trusting that He’s not going to stop now.

When Sam finished his monologue about the Shire the ensuing conversation took place. Take a moment to read it and I hope you have a Samwise in your life. Everyone needs at least one…

Sam: [Both are overcome by exhaustion] Do you remember the Shire, Mr. Frodo? It’ll be spring soon. And the orchards will be in blossom. And the birds will be nesting in the hazel thicket. And they’ll be sowing the summer barley in the lower fields… and eating the first of the strawberries with cream. Do you remember the taste of strawberries? 

Frodo: No, Sam. I can’t recall the taste of food… nor the sound of water… nor the touch of grass. I’m… naked in the dark, with nothing, no veil… between me… and the wheel of fire! I can see him… with my waking eyes! 

Sam: Then let us be rid of it… once and for all! Come on, Mr. Frodo. I can’t carry it for you… but I can carry you!”

3 Replies to ““Home is behind, the world ahead…””

  1. I’m glad things are going well for you right now. Love that bit from Samwise 🙂

    (I can’t believe you can just watch a single LOTR movie, out of order at that. The OCD in me is over here, eye twitching, all “WATCH THE FIRST TWO, MATTY!” 😀 )

    Liked by 1 person

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