I saw someone complaining about their house on Facebook. My first thought was what a whiner, at least she has a house.
Are you content with your home?
A lot of women’s identity is wrapped up in their home. How clean it is, how big it is, how nice it is. A plethora of mommy bloggers have portrayed this image that good mothers have homes that look like magazine covers.
I frequently fall into the trap of discontentment. I don’t even have a house, we live in an apartment. When I make plans to have people come over I start seeing the “inadequacies” of my home. There isn’t enough room, I don’t always have matching glassware to serve people with, the coffee table looks so shabby.
So if you aren’t living in your “dream home” how can you learn to be content with what you have?
1. Clean Your House
I don’t care how nice or crappy your house is, it looks better clean. You may not be able to redecorate and furnish new rooms, but you can clean, and pretty much for free! Get rid of the clutter, only keep things you really love. Clean them til they are sparkling. Not only will your place look nicer, your things will last longer. It is virtually free to clean your home, so what better way to improve your living space!
2. Count Your Blessings.
We all know that people live in shacks on the other side of the world, but for some reason it isn’t real to us. If you are reading this on a computer of phone or tablet you own, in a house or apartment, or even trailer, you are one of the richest people in the world. Likely in the top 1%. So instead of dwelling on what you don’t have, try practicing some gratitude for what you do because you have been richly, wildly blessed beyond what many people will ever experience in their lifetime. Don’t be an entitled brat.
3. Get Rid Of The Sin Of Pride In Your Life.
There are actually a lot of Bible verses commanding us to show hospitality to each other and to strangers.
Show hospitality to one another without grumbling. 1 Peter 4:9
Yet none of them say anything about the square footage, or china pattern required to show hospitality. The need to impress our guests, or somehow feel better about ourselves because of our home and possessions is rooted in pride.
But he gives more grace. Therefore it says, “God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble.” James 4:6
The fear of the Lord is hatred of evil. Pride and arrogance and the way of evil and perverted speech I hate. Proverbs 8:13
Pride is a very dangerous sin because it can SEEM like a good thing. Isn’t it good to take care of the things you have? Even the Proverbs 31 woman made her home nice for her husband.
Pride is about motive. Are we building our homes to be havens for our families and welcoming to others? Or are we building them as a shrine to our immaculate taste. I am very guilty of this.
Pride can also cause jealousy when others have nicer things than you do. I have found myself mentally condemning people when they are able to buy nice houses, or new furniture. “Well, mommy and daddy must have paid for that!” Or, “I bet that all went on a credit card!” Yuck! How did I let sin become so deeply rooted in my thoughts?
4. Be Eternally Minded
Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. Matthew 6:19-20
Is it a sin to have a nice home? Absolutely not. But it is a sin to idolize a nice home and desire it about heavenly things. What is your calling and purpose on this earth? Can you carry it out in a less-than-stellar house? When you set your mind on the things of God and His eternal plan, things like the fabric on your love seat suddenly aren’t as important.
We live in an apartment. We are on the second floor and any guests we have can’t park in the parking lot, they have to park on the street and walk up. I have used this as an excuse for a long time. We can’t host a life group because we don’t have room. We can’t have people over for dinner because there is nowhere for them to park. Considering the early church often met in catacombs, I think my 1,000 square foot apartment would be adequate.
Learning to be content will not only help you to appreciate and be happy with what you have, it has spiritual rewards as well.
Now there is great gain in godliness with contentment, for we brought nothing into the world, and we cannot take anything out of the world. But if we have food and clothing, with these we will be content. 1 Timothy 6:6-8
Is this an area you struggle in?