I know, I know. I supposedly already did this chapter. But like the other ladies reading this book, I found this chapter worthy of more thought. Especially Amy in Peru -- I found her second post on this chapter propelled me into new thinking. (Other posts at Ordo Amoris)
Here's a question: how does your home's interior decoration demonstrate the Christian ideals of your family?
Amy asked this question in her post. She wondered whether our homes show love, lavishness, or laziness. (Ouch!)
That got me thinking. What do we want visitors to see, spiritually, in our homes?
* That we love each other. Do we have photos of each other, children's art, trophies of others' accomplishments, birthday cards -- what other items in our homes say, "I love my family member"?
* That we don't indulge in greed or self-gratification. Do our homes shout, "I must entertain myself!"? Do we have screens, Wiis, electronic chargers, DVDs, lying around our living space constantly? Are our homes full of high-priced items that show we place our value (and our money) in pricey possessions? Is there any indication in our homes that we instead put our value (and our money) into serving others?
* That we love God's Word. Could anyone coming in my home tell that I read the Bible often? That I want to remind my children of His Word? Do I have frig magnets, cross-stitch, or posters with Scripture on them? Is His Word reflected in the music we play and enjoy in our homes?
*That we aren't lazy. Our homes should be tidy, demonstrate thrift and care. Excess dirt or clutter demonstrates a lack of work to make our homes honoring to God and welcoming to others. Waste should also be avoided, as it shows a disregard for God's provision.
*That we are hospitable. Homes should be welcoming to visitors, with space to talk and enjoy company. If a visitor comes to a home and there's nowhere comfortable to sit and talk, that home does not feel hospitable. There should be tasty food, always something to drink, friendly children and pets that don't make visitors feel uncomfortable. If you love your pet more than you love your human visitor, your home might not feel hospitable either.
These are just a few thoughts. The Schaeffers clearly did their very best with little money -- almost no money, at first! How I enjoyed her stories of making leather furniture that lasted for years, or the tale of the rocking horse they made. What fun! What enriching of their marriage! I feel more challenged than before to make the most of our small rental duplex, and to enjoy it. Right now, I think the vacuum cleaner is calling my name!