“Imagine yourself as a living house. God comes in to rebuild that house. At first, perhaps, you can understand what He is doing. He is getting the drains right and stopping the leaks in the roof and so on; you knew that those jobs needed doing and so you are not surprised. But presently He starts knocking the house about in a way that hurts abominably and does not seem to make any sense. What on earth is He up to? The explanation is that He is building quite a different house from the one you thought of – throwing out a new wing here, putting on an extra floor there, running up towers, making courtyards. You thought you were being made into a decent little cottage: but He is building a palace. He intends to come and live in it Himself.” (C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity)
I love this picture Mr. Lewis paints. We work hard to create a home where our families can feel welcomed, loved and comfortable. Yet do we build a home where God can abide? Let’s look at ways we can build such a home because it should be our desire to have a home where God lives and breathes.
~ Simply ask him. Probably the no brainer here is to ask God to abide in our homes. Yes, just ask Him. Matthew 7, verse 7 says “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you.” Go to God in prayer and seek Him to live and remain always in your home. He will.
~ Have love. Colossians 3:14 says it best, “And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony.” There you go! Love must exist in a home where God is invited to reside. Love binds all who reside in the home in harmony. God would feel welcomed there because He IS love. “Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love.” (1 John 4:8)
~ Build a Strong foundation. The foundation of our homes ought to be built upon the Word of God. “For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.” (Hebrews 4:12) A home where God abides is filled with His Word daily through study, prayer and discussion. How can God resist to be in a home that speaks of Him daily to the benefit of those who live there?
~ Practice the good fruit. What is the good fruit? “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.” (Galatians 5:22,23) A home where these fruits are learned and applied is a home the Lord can be exalted in.
~ Offer forgiveness. God gets pushed out the door when we choose to hold grudges and breed resentment against one another in our homes. “For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.” (Matthew 6:14, 15) God desires us to forgive as He forgives. A home that exercises forgiveness is definitely a place the Lord can be found.
As Mr. Lewis shares in his picture, God in our home doesn’t remain a simple cottage, it becomes a palace where God does things big. He is bold in His design of our homes when we invite Him in. Its not about the physical but the spiritual. He moves and breathes life into our homes like none other. The grand transformation that takes place when we ask our Father to reside in our homes is always a blessing to those residing in the home. “For I have chosen him, that he may command his children and his household after him to keep the way of the Lord…” (Genesis 18:19)