The Homecoming

The Homecoming Sermon Illustration

Earl Hamner’s novel about one Christmas from his childhood, The Homecoming, is a perfect illustration of God’s love for his bride. At the height of the Great Depression, his father had full-time employment. The job, however, was far away from home. On Christmas Eve, Earl and his siblings and mom anxiously wait on their dad to come home from Christmas, and as it gets later and later, they all fear the worst. Suddenly, his dad makes it home and he has presents for all of them. Every single family member is given a unique, wrapped gift: from a harmonica, to a doll baby, to dresses for the girls. And Earl’s father gives his mother flowers. He informs her he spent every last cent of his paycheck and quit his job to stay home with his family (Earl Hamner Jr., The Homecoming: A Christmas Story [New York, NY: Random House, 1970]). This story reminds us of how God shows his love for his bride through Jesus, who, as the Scriptures remind us, set aside the wealth and glory of heaven and came to earth in the form of a servant, just to make it so that we can turn around and have a relationship with God (Philippians 2).