I go to prepare a place for you to rest. John 14:2 (TPT)
Precious and Holy – The Home Series (updated) – Part 7
(back by popular request, edited and updated!)
Back in Part One of this series, I said:
“God comes no matter what our lives look like. He parks in the driveway, walks up the path, knocks on the door and waits for us to answer. He doesn’t come in spite of what our interiors look like, but because of them. He includes the brokenness and the mess, just as he does the clean and well-presented bits. He doesn’t need a spotless, spacious house to live in, just an open one. He doesn’t mind if your lounge cost $100 or $5000, he just wants to sit.“
There're a few words that come to mind when I think about home:
None of these words are easy. Some are lovely, yes. But easy? No. That's what makes it beautiful.
Vulnerability is the word that most encapsulates how I feel about home. In my home, and with my people, and while I'm doing what I love, I commit to being vulnerable with my heart, life, fears, dreams, worries, hopes… all of it. It's not all pretty. It’s not all good behavior and designer furniture. It's not all confidence and certainty. It's not all great decisions and wisdom… (not ALL… I said, there is some. I hope). With vulnerability comes great risk.
I was speaking with a friend this week who isn’t sure if their relationship is working. They’ve been together for a few years, but he’s not certain that she loves him, he fears that their relationship is going nowhere, time is wasting, and it will eventually end. His question to me was, “How do I know? How do I know that it will work?”
To which I responded with shrugged shoulders, raised eyebrows and crickets.
I told him,
“You can never know.”
“Owning our story can be hard but not nearly as difficult as spending our lives running from it. Embracing our vulnerabilities is risky but not nearly as dangerous as giving up on love and belonging and joy—the experiences that make us the most vulnerable. Only when we are brave enough to explore the darkness will we discover the infinite power of our light.” Brené Brown (from her book, “The Gifts of Imperfection“)
Luke wrote that Jesus said, “For indeed, the kingdom of God is within you.” (Luke 17:21). Matthew wrote that Jesus said we should “Seek first God’s Kingdom.” (Matt 6:33). The Kingdom is here, but we still seek it out.
Home is similar. We are at home. But we are still seeking and longing for it. Figuring it out bit-by-bit, step-by-step. Learning to trust by having it fulfilled and broken. Learning faith by facing adversity, and learning love – real love – by being broken and poured out.
As I was cuddling my four-year-old daughter to sleep a few nights ago, she said, “I have to be careful mummy, or my heart will get broken.” (SHE’S FOUR!!) I guess for me, that's what home is for. A place where your heart can be broken and mended. And the journey in between is more than welcome.
Our prayer for you is that you learn to love your home, your life and all that fills it. Speak tenderly to it, and be kind to those who fill it. And know, deep down in your bones, that your life, your home, just as it is, is precious and holy. Keep on living in and searching out the mystery of it.
“Our stories are all stories of searching. We search for a good self to be and for good work to do. We search to become human in a world that tempts us always to be less than human or looks to us to be more. We search to love and to be loved. And in a world where it is often hard to believe in much of anything, we search to believe in something holy and beautiful and life-transcending that will give meaning and purpose to the lives we live.” Frederick Buechner, The Longing For Home.
Written by Lizzy Milani