Home is our most fundamental longing. And for many of us homesickness is a nagging place of grief. This book connects that desire and disappointment with the story of the Bible, helping us to see that there is a homemaking God with wide arms of welcome – and a church commissioned with this same work.
“Many of us seem to be recovering the sacred, if ordinary, beauty of place,” writes author Jen Pollock Michel. “Perhaps we’re reading along with Wendell Berry, falling in love with Berry’s small-town barber and Jayber Crow’s small-town life. . . . Or maybe we’re simply reading our Bibles better, discovering that while we might wish to flatten Scripture to serve our didactic purposes, it rises up in flesh and sinew, muscle and bone: God’s holy story is written in the lives of people and their places.”
Including a five-session discussion guide and paired with a companion DVD, Keeping Place offers hope to the wandered, help to the stranded, and a new vision of what it means to live today with our longings for eternal home.
What people are saying
“Keeping Place is both memoir and rich biblical theology, and is, in all of its parts, an aroma of the home we’ve been made and are destined for. With wit, candor, a good bit of humor, and transparent glimpses into her home, her history, her travels, her travails, her worship, her marriage, her table, her rest, and her longings—Jen offers an oasis for all of us who are homesick. Most of all, she teaches us to better discern the sights, smells, and tastes of home that are all around us right here and right now. In other words, she helps us aim at heaven, so that along the way, a little bit of earth gets thrown in too.”
-Scott Sauls, Senior Pastor of Christ Presbyterian Church, Nashville (from the foreword)
“Jen Pollock Michel has a unique gift of making theology come alive. She weaves a rich knowledge of scripture with her own compelling story, offering us a fresh perspective on a God who is the maker and keeper of place, the creator who cultivates the space where we find ourselves and the eternal home we long for. Her perspective is original, fresh, and unexpected.”
-Micha Boyett, author of Found: A Story of Questions, Grace, and Everyday Prayer
“It is one thing to write truth, and another to write it beautifully. With the skilled and hypnotic prose I have come to eagerly expect of her, Jen Michel invites us to consider the sacred space of home and the sacred duty of its keeping. We are seekers of home by design, and our homesickness is no accident. Exploring the rhythms of plenty and loss, worship and work, routine and rest, Michel exhorts us, male and female, to be faithful home-makers until such time as we inhabit our true and final dwelling-place. In a time when transience and individuality mark the lives of many, she offers here a worthy meditation for the people of God.”
-Jen Wilkin, Author and Bible teacher