Maintaining a lovely yet simple home takes work! There’s no doubt about that. I find, if I am not consistent, dust piles up. When I wait to clean the shower doors to perfection, I grumble based on that one desire I had of procrastination. And, because I make most of my meals at home, keeping the stove clean almost seems endless. But right here in this place is where my heart longs to be, offering no distractions at this juncture of my life. If I desire to eat oatmeal for dinner, I can do that! To go weeks without the television on, is also comforting to me.
Nonetheless, I recognize that sharing this home I have created is essential. Designed home spaces sharing such sweet peace, with areas often emitting the grounding scents of earl grey, oolong, or jasmine tea, and occasional fresh ground coffee from the Mayan population near my place of birth. I now view one of the tiny craft tables. A little table of yarn, one of three. Although I am aiming for more land, at this moment, I am pleased.
God provides so much in life. As I stroll toward the end of December, I appreciate those who take time out of their busy lives to visit me, text me, check on me, and those who are always supportive of me. Friends who show up to help me figure out how to replace the garbage disposal using reliable YouTube channels. The friends who helped to hang Christmas decorations on the day my weary and tired knees just couldn’t bear the ladder. The plumber friend who just a few years ago, allowed me to be his apprentice for a week. The woodworker who continues to teach me to make Shaker and vintage furniture. The athletes who taught me the tricks of playing basketball, golf, tennis, and my maternal grandfather’s fascination with table tennis, too. My paternal grandfather though Irish, who used to speak to me in Welsh (I still try to remember some sentences). The blacksmith, who talks joyfully about his work and who offer me moments to see him create. The canner, candlemaker, and basket weaver. My ancestors who worked with their hands while consistently praising God. The Southern ladies who took me under their wings to show me that as a woman, I can be feminine in Carhart overalls and steel toe boots, just as I can be in floral dresses. Yes, all these people come to mind this December. For them as elements of God’s consistent favor, I am forever thankful.
One essential thing I aim for is a beautiful life at home. Beautiful home: All expected of home, such as food in the larder, a working refrigerator, clean sheets, candles, lanterns, or electricity where one reads. In their most compelling production, which presents secure proficiency, our homes, no matter the size, zip code, and outer appearances, are only soothing places when the Godhead is allowed in, to dwell in it, and us. A place for honesty, acceptance, goodness, beauty, serenity from the hustle and bustle of life, and a place of pure and unrelenting love. A place where no matter our travels, our hearts turn to and long to be. To be in spaces where our souls are nourished.
We know God is everywhere. Yet, we also know with Him in our homes He consistently cradles the rawness, shyness, loudness, impatient ways, hard-heartedness, and brokenness, of us. Despite the challenges we face, these locations of us, for us, and by us, where God is always near reestablishing His image, His imago dei, into you and into me.
From the beginning, it is shown that God desires to always be kind. Even though He is the creator of all things, He wants never to let anyone feel left out.
In the beginning, He said:
… Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness. And let them have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over the livestock and over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.”
Genesis 1:26 (ESV)
Here we see God said, “Let us.”
Our God is considerate, generous, and kind, among many favorable characteristics. Spending time with Him offer profound results. Friends, we can seek to find fulfillment from things, people, and beliefs. Still, from my personal experiences, nothing sticks except the word and being of God. With Him in our homes is where we begin. Here in this space, I am sheltered from the nothingness life wants to occasionally offer and where I continue to grow from my somewhat childish struggles and into the child born of God’s image. The spot where I entertain friends, enjoy teatime, pray so hard, cook healthy meals, create, fix things, grieve of loss, and rejoice in newness. The place where my soul longs to be at company with all that makes, home.
As we move toward the birth of our Jesus Christ, it’s so good to take time to appreciate home. Now, I am aware that family size and dynamics can make enjoying home a formidable accomplishment. Even so, I propose finding a space where you can put your feet up and relax, even for a little while. Such as a special place where you cultivate your sense of being to experience God’s love to the fullest. I’d say that this may take stepping back a bit to take shelter in stillness. If we are not careful, December in its glory of lights and utter splendor can take a lot from our daily points of normalcy. However, I remain in thought that when we consider the simplistic natures of Christ, alongside His obedience, we can soon come to hear and capture the truthful essence of His being, homeward bound! Sounds so good, huh? Indeed. I say again, indeed!
Only through His grace & love,
Of some interest:
Punch lanterns such as the one in the photo above are adored by many vintage enthusiasts, I thought to share that we find them to be very quaint. However, in the old days, these lanterns were used to shed light, but more importantly they were used to keep air from putting the candles out when people walked the streets. They provided safety to those who had to stroll the streets at dark.