The Meaning of Home
- 2005 13 Jun
It is a full time job preparing our home for prospective buyers. The to-do list seems to get longer and longer. Before we touched up our first smudgy hand print or weeded the first flower bed though, we had to write a sales ad to generate interest. What information would someone really want to know? There was so much to tell, so I began with the most important details:
"Beloved family home available. Wonderful living room with perfect spot for Christmas tree so you can enjoy lights while cuddling by fire place and reading your favorite stories to your children. Cozy family room large enough to enjoy a John Wayne movie together with buttery popcorn and soda that won't spoil the hardwood floors in case of spills. Kitchen with great homework bar so you can call out spelling words while cooking dinner. Extra large laundry room in excellent condition, except for door frame bearing family height markings made every New Year's Day. Room complete with laundry shoot, perfect for sending down dirty clothes and spunky kittens.
"Master bathroom large enough for parents and children to shower, bathe and brush teeth all in one location, leaving the two kids' bathrooms upstairs virtually unused. Corner Jacuzzi tub perfect for a five-year-old's diving expeditions, wash cloth wars and ferret bathing. Private study with two entrances so children can run through playing hide-and-go-seek while you are trying to work. Dining room for memorable birthday dinners, holiday feasts and Christmas craft making. Bedrooms close enough together to keep away the boogie man, with carpet soft enough for kneeling for bed time prayers. Playrooms with well insulated walls to muffle giggles, drum beats, arguments, slumber party chaos and the sound of breaking windows.
"Large yard perfect for zip lines, trampolines and dirt bikes, yet accessible enough to emergency vehicles to retrieve casualties. Beautifully landscaped yard perfect for training teenage boys in lawn mowing skills. Location in great neighborhood where neighborhood kids are available to run in and out of your house with muddy shoes and big smiles any time of day or night."
I liked it! I felt it really captured the heart of our home. Unfortunately, the cost of such an ad would have required a second mortgage; and I hadn't even included how perfect the stairs were for toboggan rides in a sleeping bag, or how much fun the foyer was for sliding through in stocking feet. There was absolutely no chance I would have room to communicate the exhilaration of having a family scooter race around the circle drive or the benefits of wide open spaces on the Fourth of July.
Instead of being able to give a full picture of all that awaits the family that would choose our home, there was only space to say the basics: 4 bedroom, 3 bath family home on three acres...
In 35 words I just couldn't tell it all. Only those who come to visit will really appreciate the wonderful details that make our house a home. In anticipation of such a person, every day is filled with preparations; paint touch ups, closet cleaning, mowing, dusting and a thousand other details geared toward getting our home ready to welcome a new family. It is a great deal of work, but we want everything to be perfect.
I imagine there must be that same sense of anticipation (times ten) going on in heaven. Jesus said, "There are many rooms in my Father's home, and I am going to prepare a place for you. If this were not so, I would tell you plainly. When everything is ready, I will come and get you, so that you will always be with me where I am." John 14:2-3 (NIV)
If God were to run an ad about the heavenly home that is available, it might say something like:
"The last home you will ever need. (Revelation 21:22) Perfect location in the heart of the most incredible city known to man with a distinct international flavor. (Revelation 7:9) Has solid foundation, whose architect and builder is God. (Hebrews 11:10) Complete with incredible treasure room with great security system where moth and rust do not destroy and thieves do not break in and steal. (Matthew 6:20) Amazing neighbors (Revelation 5:11). Too many amenities to list: things which eye has not seen and ear has not heard ...all that God has prepared for those who love Him. (1 Corinthians 2:9) Easy terms. Owner financed (John 3:16)"
Actually, He has run that ad. You can look for yourself; but like our ad, those few words could never communicate all that there is to say about the one-of-a-kind home God has prepared for each one of us. Nothing short of moving in will reveal the wonders that await.
While we are waiting though, what a privilege to create a home here on earth that, even in small part, reflects the warmth and love of the one being prepared for us.
Kim Wier Copyright 2005
Kim Wier is the director of Engaging Women, a ministry of women encouraging women through speaking, writing and broadcasting. The author of four books, an award winning humor columnist and radio talk show host, Kim regularly speaks to audiences around the country with depth and humor that focuses on discovering God in the everyday experiences of life. For more visit www.engagingwomen.com.