As I walked up the street with our mail, I noticed how two fall trees beautifully frame our home. It reminded me of this series of posts I wrote a couple years ago. Because I am passionate about creating a home that is intentional, authentic, and Christ-centered, I want to share them again!
With this time of year, there’s a lot of inspiration (or pressure?) to decorate our homes. We will likely welcome friends and family into our homes with the holidays. But what about the heart of of your home? How are the relationships doing between those who live there? Who is investing time in creating “home?”
Our homes are not an image to manage. They are places that can be havens of care and love. If you want to join me in this, these posts are written for you! (See end of post for links to each topic.)
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A few years ago, we literally watched our home be built. We’d just moved to southern Utah in the beginning of June, and we made many visits on hot summer days while we lived in a rental on the other side of town.
It was a constantly changing development. Concrete foundation was laid, framing formed the skeleton of the house, a maze of electrical and plumbing was added, then a protective roof, and finally sheetrock defined the rooms. By fits and spurts our house took shape.
Building a home is a beautiful work that takes place over time. This is true of the work of building an actual house, but even more true of making a house truly a home. Our homes, including aspects such as relationships and spiritual care, are shaped by attentiveness, creativity, and work over time. These verses from Proverbs inspired this series of posts:
“The wisest of women builds her house …” ~Proverbs 14:1 (ESV)
“By wisdom a house is built, and by understanding it is established;
by knowledge the rooms are filled with all precious and pleasant riches.” ~ Proverbs 24:3-4
“Home” varies throughout seasons of life. This work might bring to mind the image of a mom keeping house, with a husband and children. But this isn’t necessary! Through all the different seasons of life, this picture captures only one possibility for “home.”
I always wanted to be a homemaker and first noticed these verses when I was about 17. In a sense, I created “home” in my dorm room at Spring Vale Academy (a Christian boarding school) my senior year of high school. I decorated the walls, had a little system for washing dishes in my sink, and welcomed other girls into my room to chat.
As a newlywed, I created home in our one-bedroom apartment on a shoestring budget. Later, our family of four lived in my mom’s basement for a number of months. And we set up home in two different furnished rentals in Utah over the summer while our house was built, with nearly all our belongings inaccessible in storage.
Another possibility of “home” is a single woman living in an apartment and creating a cozy and comfortable space to care for herself. She doesn’t hesitate to use beautiful items that she enjoys, rather than save them for a hoped-for time when she has a husband. With creativity and love, she connects with loved ones on the phone and invites people into her home.
In another season of life, my widowed mother has a lovely home in a condo community with her roommate, a friend of hers who is also widowed. They’ve created beauty in a space that meets their needs, enjoy dear friendship in each other, reach out to others, and share devotional times together in the morning.
Creating “home” applies to all of us, in all seasons of life! No season of life is perfect. Understandably, some seasons are more challenging. Sometimes it requires more patience, energy, intentionality and creativity. But whether we’re single or married, young or old, there are creative ways we can live this out.
Over the next few weeks, we’re going to explore aspects of building “home.” We’ll think about how this is a place where the whole person is cared for. I’m excited to explore each of these aspects with you! As always, please share your ideas as we learn from each other with comments below!
In your words, what is “home?”
How can we build “home” so it is a starting place for lived-out-love?
See these links for each topic:
2 Meeting Our Basic Needs With Care (Physical) ~ 3 Our Home, Haven (Emotional) ~ 4 Our Closest Relationships (Relational) ~ 5 An Open Door (A Heart of Hospitality) ~ 6 Fellow Sheep (Spiritual) ~ 7 Learning and Growing Together (Personal Growth)
Kathryn Featherstone is a Gallup-Certified Strengths Coach and a board-certified Christian Life Coach, who helps people live and love well out of their strengths and their relationship with Christ. She’d like to encourage you in your journey! Write her a note or see her Coaching page.