It’s such a warm word. It’s the place where we feel safe, where our children feel safe. It’s where we can actually be ourselves, isolated from the rest of the world with all of its criticism and danger and stress.
I don’t know what your picture of “home” is, and I don’t know how it compares to what home really is for you, but I do know that as moms, we all try to make our homes a haven for our families. It might not look Instagram-worthy every day, and it may not have the decor of a Magnolia magazine, but regardless, I think most of us want our homes to be the safe place we can let go and be ourselves.
Ever since I was a little girl listening to the old songs about heaven, I’ve tried to picture what the streets of gold looked like. I have wondered if the mansions were built one after the other like the houses I saw on tv. In my imagination, everything in heaven was veiled in a cloud-like vignette, built on shiny streets, wrapped in a sunny glow.
I think I always thought about the tangible structures and elements of heaven more than the atmosphere and culture of heaven, you know? All the old folks at church always called it “home.” I sang along, but never compared my heavenly home to my current one.
One time, several years ago, I was asked to give a devotional, and God put a thought on my heart: as Christians, we are to bring the atmosphere and culture of heaven into every situation we encounter on earth. That’s the heartbeat behind the Lord’s Prayer: “on earth as it is in heaven.” Recently, I was struck with the realization that Jesus-following moms have a unique opportunity and responsibility to cultivate the atmosphere of heaven in our own earthly homes.
Think about it.
Just like heaven is free from the stress and cares of this world, our homes should be the most care-free, stress-free places on earth.
I’m not saying we don’t bring our problems home; instead, our homes need to be the safe place where we can lay those things at Jesus’ feet and find release from those cares and worries. We can make the decision to take our dirt from the day immediately to Him and let Him wash us and renew us. Then as we are freed, we offer a place of peace for our children as well.
Sin doesn’t have a place in heaven, and it should feel out of place in our homes as well.
Part of fostering an atmosphere of heaven in our homes is dealing with sin and strife swiftly–before it can get a foothold in our hearts or the hearts of our children. Instead of seeing our children as little “troublemakers,” we should see sin for what it is, moving quickly to help them weed it out of their lives and restore the culture of heaven in our homes.
We know heaven is the place where Jesus is; it should be evident that Jesus lives in our homes as well.
When others find themselves at our table, they should feel the warmth and love of Christ in everything we do. The joy of heaven should permeate our homes so that it truly feels like a little bit of heaven on earth.
As moms, we have the ability to influence the mood of our homes. Remember the old saying, “If mama ain’t happy ain’t nobody happy”? There’s definitely some truth to it. Again, we aren’t perfect, and no matter how hard we try, there will be days when we feel like the exact opposite of heaven–but regardless, it starts with us. It starts with moms. When we put Jesus first, our homes will begin to radiate His glory. When we bring our messes to Him, and point our children to the Savior, our home becomes a place of refuge. We may be knee-deep in laundry and dishes, but our homes can still be joyful and stress-free when we determine to put Him first and let the atmosphere of heaven rule our own hearts.