Earlier this week, I shared at a women’s event on what home means to me. This is an excerpt from that night.
I loved home as a child. Home was a happy place for me and I loved being there. I say these things with gratefulness knowing that for many home was not such a place.
My home was not perfect, but if I were to pick just one thing to explain why I loved home it would be this one thing – because the gospel was present.
1). The Gospel Makes a Home
From my earliest memories, my parents were sharing the gospel with me. I have so many memories of this. Early memories.
Riding in my Dad’s green Volkswagen as a five year old and listening intently as he explained that my heart was terribly sinful.
That is not something you’ll often hear that you should tell your child. But even as a child I knew I was.
And it was understanding my own heart problem that I felt the gravity of Christ’s death on the cross.
It wasn’t just a story. I needed His forgiveness.
I also remember the warm summer evening when I prayed to receive Christ on the front porch swing with my mom and dad on either side of me.
While I have many fun memories of home, they all pale in comparison to these memories.
Now was a parent myself, I recognize that even though I try to shield my children as much as possible, they are still confronted with the hard realities of a fallen world just as I was as a child.
Even the happiest of homes cannot erase the realities of sickness, disease, death, and sin. And the home is the first place these questions are either answered or left unanswered.
I was reading a blog not too long ago where a young mom wrote that she didn’t know how to explain to her young child the concept of death.
Her son had said he didn’t want to grow up because then his parents would die and he would die. She didn’t know what to say. And she asked the question to her blog readers what she should tell her child.
My heart grieved for her because without the Gospel there is no good answer to those questions.
This is where the Gospel transforms our homes. Home becomes a place of comfort in the cross.
Home isn’t a good place because it’s a perfect place. Home is a good place because it’s a forgiven place.
A place where God’s forgiveness is taught and forgiveness is modeled to one another.
Any mom can keep a tidy house, or even make her home her domain, but if the Gospel isn’t there, the home is lacking the most important foundation.
“Everyone then who hears these words of mine and does them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock.” – Matthew 7:24
2). The Word Makes a Home
It is God’s Word that bring joy and order to a home. We know from Duet 6 and Ephesians 5 that children are to be brought up in the admonition and instruction of the Lord.
It is God’s Word which keeps children from falling with wayward women and wicked men as the Proverbs talk about.
Growing up, we were always encouraged to be in God’s Word. When my dad gave me my first Bible inscribed in the front he wrote, “This book will keep you from sin or sin will keep you from this Book.”
God’s word is a lamp unto our feet and a light to our path.
It brings light to the home as we meditate on it, memorize it, pray it, and study it. And as we teach our children the Word we build a foundation for our children to know and love God’s life giving Word.
I am thankful for the many verses I memorized as a child. Even though I didn’t fully understand what many of them meant, God used them to impress His truth on my heart then and as I grew in my knowledge of Him.
The Word brings light and life to even the simplest of homes. A home with the Word is one everyone wants to be because they are welcomed and loved in such a home.
Lastly, and what we’ve talked about so much tonight.
3). A Godly Woman Makes a Home
You have heard tonight on the importance of a mother’s role in the home, so that is the aspect I am going to focus on next.
It is such an important role, and that is why I love the first two points so much. Because without the gospel and the Word, where would any of us be as mothers?
Keeping the gospel and God’s Word as our foundation for mothering is so vital because when you’re actually in the busyness of it, sometimes it can be difficult to see.
In the cyclical days of mothering, I often cannot see how everything is coming together in my children’s lives.
I am folding laundry, I am picking princess dresses off the floor for the umpteenth time, I’m cleaning the kitchen again, I’m reading books on the couch, I’m brushing teeth, I’m dealing with a discipline issue, I’m making someone eat their supper, I’m grabbing a few moments in the Word, I’m being woken up again, I’m oversleeping again, I’m interrupted again, I’m frustrated, I’m memorizing a Bible verse, I’m catching lightning bugs, I’m holding their hands, and we all go round again.
Sometimes, it feels a bit like a carousel, with both cheery and fretful songs in an alternating pattern. And I wonder if we are going somewhere. Oh I know we are, I really do, but I can’t quite see ahead and I feel like I’ve seen this scenery before.
Last week, I was reading in the book of John and came across these words from Jesus:
“My food, is to do the will of Him who sent me and to finish His work.”
It came from doing God’s will.
Sometimes I think I will find the rest I need by kicking my feet up on the couch in complete silence.
I also find a certain satisfaction from a tidy house and a home cooked meal, or a cleaned out junk drawer.
But here is the truth, those things cannot sustain any woman. Any wife. Or goodness knows, any mother.
Even though that is the message we are often told (and often tell ourselves). That all these other things will satisfy our hearts.
I’ve found joy in knowing that I am actually sustained as I do what God has called me to do. Because I find strength in His strength.
And I don’t have to finish all the work, because Jesus did it for me.
The mother makes a home. Not just because of all the things that she does to provide for her family, but because of the God she rests in. That brings a light and a joy and a happiness to even the messiest abodes.
I love Psalm 90:1″O Lord you have been our dwelling place in all generations.”
The Gospel makes a home, the Word makes a home, a mother makes a home, but it is the Lord who is our dwelling place and makes our earthly homes – whether simple or grandeur – mirror our one day heavenly home.