Our hearts get attached to places that remind us of home. The sights, sounds, smells and sensations of the places we go create strong memories that trigger our emotions whenever we are reminded of them. Our ultimate residence is heaven but the longing to be in our eternal home is reflected in our experiences on this earth. The heroes of our faith (Hebrews 11) reflected this desire in their experience:
People who say such things show that they are looking for a country of their own. If they had been thinking of the country they had left, they would have had opportunity to return. Instead, they were longing for a better country—a heavenly one. Therefore, God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them. (Hebrews 11:14-16)
When we moved to Ventura County in Southern California (after living in San Diego for almost 30 years), we wondered what places would become our new “go to” places. These are the locations that remind us we belong and make us feel good about our choice to live here. They are where we say, “Hi” to friends and cheer them on. They are places that add value to our lives every time we visit them.
Two of the places that have made our marina home are Mariner’s Mail Stop and The Honey Cup. Mariner’s mail is a small, privately run post office that services the boating community around us. The two ladies that operate the store are friendly, faithful and fun. They laugh out loud, greet everyone enthusiastically and make mailing seem easy. They tease us for always wearing kayaking clothes when we show up to get our mail. They have also admitted they are slightly jealous that we are outside and they are not. They are quickly becoming friends who ask questions about our family and our career.
The Honey Cup is a privately owned coffee house run by an entrepreneurial couple. They have great coffee highlighted by their signature “honey cup latte” that includes homemade honey and coconut milk. For Pam, a honey cup latte is an announcement that all is right in our life. They also feature many gluten free options which has become important to Pam’s health and serve some of our favorite breakfast dishes at the marina. We are also fascinated to see what entrepreneurial idea will be on display the next time we visit. When a new product captures their interest, they display it for all to see. One of my (Bill) favorites was a foldable, motorized bike. It can be folded up to fit in a trunk and will travel at 20 miles per hour.
The fact that we get to kayak over to pick up our mail and get coffee is a double blessing for us because we would drive there if we had to. It is just more fun on the water.
Where are your go to places? Share with your loved ones this week where you love to go and how it makes you feel like you are at home.