A Heart for Home

“You want to play house?”  Do you remember engaging your friends with that question, as a girl?

Today I’m playing house on this beautiful day and decorating for fall.

When I was a little girl, I’ve loved playing house and cuddling my baby doll after changing her clothes several times, and playing with my toy kitchen and tea set.  Now that I have a real family, I still play house by spending time with my family, cooking some delicious (some not) new recipes, and rearranging furniture and decor into comfortable, welcoming environments. (Notice the dust on the top of the entertainment center. Dusting is not as fun as decorating.)

Playing house and creating home have always been at the core of my heart.  It gives me the warm feeling that fresh baking bread gives a home.  What seemed complex in the day is less stressful in the aroma of bread and home.

But creating home is more than aesthetics, good food, and sweet aromas.  Some definitions of “home” are: A safe place where a person can find refuge and safety or live in security; an establishment where somebody who is in need of care, rest, or medical attention can stay or find help.

Creating home for me is providing an environment that gives my family a heart for home.

For example, my husband loves music.  Something as simple as having jazz or classical music playing when he comes home from a long day’s work instantly uplifts his spirit and draws him into home and family.

My boys also want to unwind from a day at school.  Allowing them to have a snack and kick back for a time, creates in them contentment and more of a willingness to move on to responsibility.

Another way I create home, and a heart for it, is to give my boys a safe place to fail.  There have been many times my guys have failed outside and inside the home. But they need a safe place to run to.  Instead of condemning them for arguments, a bad grade, or poor judgment, I’m “learning” to use these times as teachable moments and natural consequences, allowing them to see their failure and find restoration and security.

I have driven my family crazy nagging, whining and complaining.

My former approach with my husband was to unload all my emotions and frustrations when he walked in the door.  He would then immediately escape to the 3 foot x 3 foot toilet room–not the ideal picture of home we all want.

With my boys, my former approach was to immediately crack the whip on chores, school work, and practicing their musical instruments.  However, I would find them sneaking about trying to find a secret place to relax.

Unfortunately, I’ve learned the hard way, these unproductive tactics don’t work.

By unloading on and nagging my family, I was taking away their sense of security and refuge they so desperately needed from the sometimes cruel world we live in.  I wasn’t using my God-given wisdom and understanding to create a sense of home.  Instead, I was annoying like a continual leaking faucet (Proverbs 19:13).

I am learning that as I watch over the details, responsibilities, and affairs of my home, I can create a safe and loving environment that gives each of us a heart for home.  Now that’s the sweet aroma of home!

“Even the sparrow has found a home, and the swallow a nest for herself, where she may have her young…”  Psalm 84:3

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