Wednesday, 22 June 2011

A Music Lesson

As a woman, you have great influence in setting the tone for your home.
You can be sharp with nagging or critical comments;
you can be flat with a lazy or apathetic attitude;
or you can be on key and bring a harmony of joy and peace to your home.

.:.Be someone he wants to come home to.:.

Go in peace to love and serve the Lord.:.

Monday, 20 June 2011

.:.Outside In.:.Inside Out.:.

“I don’t know how you keep your house so clean, Sarah!” said my neighbor as we enjoyed some much needed ‘girl time’ a few days ago.

“Well, I view it as a ministry and I do it unto the Lord. I know how a clean house can make family and guests feel relaxed and comfortable. And… I just hate messes, always have. It probably helps that I don’t have any kids.” I responded with a smile. Our conversation lingered there a bit longer before it moved on.

As I reflected further on this, I realized that the times my house appears disorganized are when my inner self isn’t right with the Lord. During times of life stresses, I can find myself trying to lean on my own strength rather than on God. In these times, the laundry goes undone just as my quiet times do. I distance myself from the dishes just as I distance myself from the Lord. I can’t go very long with a mess, so sometimes I tidy up, hoping that it cleans the state of my heart too. 

Who am I kidding?

The outward never fully reflects or affects the inward. It's quite the opposite. God works from the inside out, not the outside in. Even if my house and I are masked to look presentable, I can be a disorganized mess on the inside.  It is not until I seek the Lord, soften my heart, repent and accept His grace that my insides are cleansed by Him. And He does so faithfully.

I know He sees me clean my house and recognizes that I do it unto Him. But in those moments where I ask, “Lord, you could visit here, right?”
He gently whispers back to me and says, “Sarah, it’s beautiful. Thank you. Now will you spend some time with me? I care more about you than I do your clean tub. I want to visit you not your home, I visit your heart.”

Hospitality to our Lord isn't only in our home, it's in our hearts.

More important than a clean house, is a clean heart. How hard that is to remember and priortize sometimes! I am learning to think this way more often. I invest money in good cleaning products and time into having a clean home; and it does take time. It also takes intentional time to cultivate a clean heart. What’s the biggest difference? We can dust and vacuum, but it is God who works in us to make our hearts clean.

As the psalmist said years ago, this is my prayer today: “Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me.” Psalm 51:10

Go in peace to love and serve the Lord.