Natalie is hosting At the Well this week. The topic is how our homes are an extension of who we are. Hop on over to her blog to read her thoughts on this subject, as well as the thoughts of the other ladies who have blogged on this topic. After you read my post, of course. (grin)
Our homes do reflect who we are. Are we messy, organized, obsessive-compulsive, tidy, just doing what needs to be done in our housekeeping? Just as we discussed in Keeper's At Home, we are to keep our homes in such a way that honors God.
Lately, I have been what is known as a slacker. I haven't felt well, so the floors haven't been vaccuumed, the kitchen, bathroom and foyer haven't been mopped, supper is rarely cooked (it's bought), and I went two weeks without washing the sheets. I've washed dishes and clothes and that's about it! Martha Stewart would faint if she walked in my house, although not before admiring my autumn candles and apple cinnamon plug-in's that make it smell like fall.
A bit about our home. The house had had just been built when we bought it about 15 years ago. It's in a subdivision in a suburb. It's a 3 bedroom, 2 bath one story house. It has a double carport, a nice patio and a perfectly sized front and back yard. When we bought it, there were no furnishings because no one had ever lived in it. Before we signed the closing papers, we went over one night and climbed through a window. Steve, Kristyn and I sat down on the floor where the table would go and at supper we had bought at Sonic. Our house became a home that night. We began with putting up blinds, and moved on from there. Over the years we have added our own special touches. Steve put chair railing in the den on a Saturday and we wall-papered from the chair railing down. We've changed the carpet in our den and bought a matching sofa and recliner. We have personalized the house to suit our preference in decor and needs. A tire swing was hung from a tree in the back yard, patio furniture was a gift, a matching bedroom set was purchased. It's comfy, it's cozy, and has bookshelves to die for.
Although the interior design of our homes may we reflect who we are outwardly, do they really reflect who we are spiritually?
In the Old Testament, specific laws were given on keeping the home. Mildew was potentially cause for a house to be condemned and it's owner to be declared unclean. I'm not kidding. Read about it here. When a person was considered unclean, there were major steps they had to go through to become clean again.
In the New Testament, we are instructed to be keepers of the home. I'm not kidding. Read about it here. Fortunately, we are under grace now, and when we slack as I have, we have a Father we can go to who can cleanse us and give us the opportunity for a do-over.
My home reflects love. You can see it in the handprints on the walls, the Gail Pittman bowl on the table that catches junk mail, the recliner that rocks the grandbaby, (grandbabies, I have to get used to saying that!) the pack and play in my Quiet Time Room (what doesn't belong here?), and the 3 bears laying throughout the house that the dog loves on. You can see it in the telescope in the pool room, where Steve keeps all things important to him, in the books stacked at various places throughout the house so I can pick one up and begin reading, you can see it on the back patio, where there is lamp oil for the torches so we can have light for our late night talks and keep the mosquitos at bay.
Love lives in my den, where on the hearth there is a silver pewter cross on a stand and above the mantle a picture of a Lamb sitting on a crown of thorns. Excellent conversation pieces!
Love lives in the kitchen, where meals are prepared in the oven and microwave, where the dishes that are in the sink are proof that the food was good because the plates are empty. Love lives in the echoes of the kitchen where a 13 month old grandson runs through screaming, "Ayyyyyyyyyyy!" because he has found his voice.
Love lives in the recliner, where daily devotionals, Bible reading, and much prayer is given to the Lord.
Natalie asks, "How does your home reflect who you are?"
"Jesus replied, "If anyone loves me, he will obey my teaching. My Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him."
~ John 14:23
My answer? Through the love that lives in it.