Sunday, January 25, 2009


My house is starting to look really dated. I have been spending a lot of time looking through magazines and collecting paint chips, but a couple of days ago we did something for it that really made it look like a whole new place.

We had it cleaned. By professionals. And I mean it sparkled. I walked through my spotless house, still fresh with the faint smell of household cleaners, and I thought, Man, this is really a nice house. I was a little perplexed wondering just what setting they put the vacuum cleaner on to get enough horsepower to suck all the dirt out of my carpet and make it look so fluffy. It certainly never looks like that after I vacuum.

Just having my house that clean actually made me feel more relaxed than normal. I imagined the peaceful evening we would have sitting in our spotless living room.

And then my kids ran in from the backyard.

"Don't touch anything!" I almost said. "Don't play with anything, don't even breathe!"

And then the doorbell rang.

See, here's where my dilemma really begins. Phil and I have always wanted to have our home be a place where neighbor kids feel welcome and know they will be listened to and cared about. But, the selfish little voice whispered in my head, if I open the door my clean house will quickly disappear and I won't have my relaxing evening.

With a sigh, I opened the door."Wipe your shoes, please," I said.

In the next couple of hours, mud was tracked all over my clean, fluffy carpet, the kitchen floor returned to its usual sticky state, furniture was turned over during a wrestling match, and nerf arrows were littered all over my house along with other toys. It was not exactly the quiet evening I had been imagining.

But another way of looking at the evening is this: Six kids ate and laughed around our table and after dinner, my husband engaged the kids in a fun object lesson for family night. He had their undivided attention as he clearly explained the Bible's message. God loves us and wants relationship with us. Our sin is in the way. Jesus forever removed that barrier on the cross.

In the light of eternity, I suppose there there are more important things than a clean house.

A house isn't a home until you can write "I love you" in the dust on the furniture.


stephanie said...

well... my house sure is homey!

thanks for some much needed perspective.

HappyNomads said...

way to go....i love how you you guys love the little kiddies that come to your house...may their be fruit in their lives and not on your carpet!!