Our house is three-years old. When I stood in the giant kitchen, it was love at first sight. I ran my hands along the counters, envisioned the wall color, and in my mind dictated where each piece of furniture would find a home. We eagerly called our friend and realtor and signed the papers. Picking up the keys to our new house was the happiest day of our lives. My husband owned a house all ready when first I met him, but this is our first house bought together. This is my first house.
I drove to our new home as fast as the speed limit and police officers would allow. I pulled into my new driveway and squealed in glee when I saw what my husband had done; he bought a bottle of wine and some flowers. We slept on the floor in our new bedroom. The next day my mother-in-law and other family friends rallied around us in our new barren front yard. I pulled in with a fresh batch of groceries. Smiles adorned everyone’s face as they shared in our joy.
The cell phone rang.
I should have ignored it. I should have listened to the nervous twitter of my heart. The day my husband and I moved into our home is forever tainted by the memories of that phone call. I imagined so many teas and so many friends stopping over to say hello. I imagined many heart-to-hearts in the kitchen over coffee and fresh baked goods. I imagined my home would flow with friends and family. It may not have turned out the way I had imagined at first blush, but I am grateful for what God did teach me.
Relationships take two people. It takes two people who want to learn about each other and who want to get involved. It takes two people who forebear each others faults and encourage each others strengths. It takes two people who care enough to break down the barriers. We each put up barriers. We are not even aware of it. Once we become aware of those barriers, we need to break them down and allow people inside. Our friends may let us down. Our family may let us down. Our hearts may break a thousand times, but Jesus has a big tube of super glue and He knows how to put those pieces back together again. Do not be afraid to let your heart break. Take a risk on someone. Love them in spite of their differences. Enjoy healthy boundaries. Most importantly, keep your hearts and doors open for the unexpected. You will not have any regrets.
My home is full of love and encouragement. It is not a brittle or cold place. I don’t care if you come in with muddy shoes. I don’t care if you wish to use my place as a place to crash because the world is unfair and weighing too heavily upon your shoulders. I don’t care what you have done wrong. God loves you. He loves you so much He sent us His Son to die on the cross for our sins. A home is not a roof and four walls; our home is where Jesus resides. My home is also wherever my husband sleeps. Our house is full of laughter. Joy has a permanent place in our house. How? Because we believe a marriage is three people: Jesus, your spouse, and you. We believe a marriage is not about power plays or egos. It is not about selfish ambition. It is not about crossing healthy boundaries. It is about encouragement, love, and following Jesus with all your heart and your soul. How are you breaking down the barriers? How are you making your home a place where people want to spend their time?
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