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Musings and Memories

At home, in my recliner

Doug Dezotell
Posted 1/29/22

Years ago I sat down with some friends and learned how to play the game of Chickenfoot. It is a game played with dominoes.  

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Musings and Memories

At home, in my recliner


Years ago I sat down with some friends and learned how to play the game of Chickenfoot. It is a game played with dominoes.  

I first played Chickenfoot while on a church retreat at Beersheba Springs Assembly up on the mountain top in Grundy County, Tennessee.  

The retreat was a wonderful time of Christian growth and fellowship for a group of folks from Mt. Lebanon United Methodist Church. In one of the sessions we each talked about the spiritual journey that brought us to the church. It was a blessing to hear each individual’s story of faith and the path that led them to where they were that day.  

We all shared several things in common: our faith in Christ, and the fact that we considered Mt. Lebanon to be our church home at the time. In another one of the sessions, we were asked to name one simple pleasure we have in life. I immediately thought of my recliner sitting in my living room at home.  

I have traveled to a lot of places over the years. I’ve made numerous trips to North Dakota; numerous trips to the Navajo Reservation in Northern Arizona; trips to Virginia and West Virginia; a trip to Northern California; a trip to Israel; several trips to the Caribbean; and numerous trips to Alabama. I’ve seen a lot of beautiful country traveling across the US and to other nations, but each trip had this one thing in common: I really looked forward to getting home. 

I remember Dolly Parton saying one time that she enjoyed traveling and touring, but she was always glad to get home. Dolly said, “Home is where I hang my wig!”  

Home is where we know we belong, where we feel the most comfortable, where we can be ourselves, where we can “take the wig off” and just be who we are meant to be. And my bed at home is the most comfortable for me. It’s not one of those fancy Sleep Number Beds or a Tempurpedic, but I lay just right in that bed next to my wife.  

Over the years I’ve sat in a lot of different chairs: hard ones and soft ones, wooden rocking chairs and homemade benches, fancy cushioned wingbacks and metal folding chairs. But there is one chair that always calls my name: my old white recliner at home. And it is always good to be back home!  

One of the reasons for some of my travels in the recent years has been to attend funerals. My mother passed away in North Dakota one year. My father-in-law passed away in Alabama the next year. One of my best friends passed away in West Virginia; and then my mother-in-law passed away and we went to Alabama for her funeral. Last fall, my closest friend from College and beyond died in Memphis and we went there for his funeral. And then earlier this year my brother died and I went to South Dakota for his funeral.  

With each of these loved ones I had the privilege of seeing them one last time before they died and before the funeral. My mother was in the nursing home the last time I saw her, my father-in-law was in the hospital, and my friends were too. My mother-in-law was here in our home when she passed away. And my brother was in a Hospice center in South Dakota when I last saw him.  

One thing they all said to me was that they wanted to go home.  

On one of my trips to Northern Arizona to the NAOMI children’s home, one of the young Navajo boys living at the home told me every time I saw him that he wanted to go home. He had been taken from his family by the authorities because of his parents’ addictions and their physical abuse of him and his siblings. Even though his brother and sister were at NAOMI with him, he still wanted to go home. Even though his home life may have been dangerous, that boy still wanted to go home. They were in a safe place at NAOMI, but the boy wanted to go home.  

I remember Dorothy in “The Wizard of Oz” clicking her red heels together three times and saying, “There’s no place like home; there’s no place like home; there’s no place like home.” Even though she was having a grand adventure in a magical land with all of her new “best friends,” Dorothy longed to be back home. She longed for the familiar and the comfortable; where she could be herself, surrounded by her loved ones.  

I love my home here in Shelbyville. I am comfortable in my bed and my recliner, but I know that there is a Heavenly Home awaiting me as well. One of these days, I’ll be reunited with my mother and father and all my siblings. I’ll be reunited with my in-laws and my friends, and all my loved-ones who have gone on before me. And I will finally know what “being at home” is really like.  

Most importantly, we will all be at home with Jesus. One day, I will gladly proclaim, one last time, “It sure is good to be home!”


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