Every where I turn, I'm reminded of my colossal failures. Like a playground bully they taunt me. Few missteps hit me as hard as the ones that take place right inside the home.
"Seriously son, how many times do I have to tell you?"
"I'm sorry, Honey, I have a headache tonight."
"This is ridiculous. How old are you anyway?"
Whether words like these, excuses, or complaints remained sealed inside my heart or fly freely from my tongue, they fall so short of my intentions. I want to create an environment of love and acceptance, counsel and correction, guidance and godliness, but time seems to keep slipping from my grasp before I can hold tight enough to seize it.
The cares of this world squeeze and what oozes out isn't always syrupy sweet despite my good intentions. In truth, sometimes its bitter. Even cruel.
My son, Joshua and I recently went to the Goodwill store. Wouldn't you know I headed straight for the books. After searching for a while I hadn't found anything worth adding to my collection so I turned to leave. I was empty handed and my sweet son wasn't okay with that. He grabbed a book from the shelf and handed it to me.
"Oh, look Mom. This looks like a book you'd love," he told me.
It was clearly old and the cover had seen better days. Its age didn't bother me in the least because I tend to gravitate toward older publications anyway, but I can be very picky about which books I choose to let past the gates of my heart. Words are too important and too impactful to just let them all in. But, Joshy was so proud of himself I knew I'd be leaving the store with the dingy old book.
The title caught my eye but the copyright page made me excited to read it.
The average American home during the mid-sixties looked quite different than it does now. My curiosity and love of history reminded me its contents would likely offer at least a few nuggets of wisdom.
And it certainly has.
It opened with a simple prayer that reminded me the very foundation of a Christian home is prayer.
Bless This House
Bless this house, O Lord, we pray,
Make it safe by night and day;
Bless these walls, so firm and stout,
Keeping want and trouble out;
Bless the roof and chimney tall,
Let Thy peace lie over all;
Bless this door, that it may prove
Ever open to joy and love.
Bless these windows shining bright,
Letting in God's heav'nly light.
Bless the hearth a-blazing there,
With smoke ascending like a prayer;
Bless the folk who dwell therein,
Keep them pure and free from sin;
Bless us all that we may be
Fit, O Lord, to dwell with Thee;
Bless us all that one day we
May dwell, O Lord, with Thee.
-Words by Helen Taylor
The women of God that came before us were women of prayer. They knew it to be the starting point in creating an atmosphere of holiness. I fear we've lost some of this.
My first tendency is to change something but being willing to be still see and admit my insufficiency as a wife and mother is vital. I was reminded on the very first page of this hidden treasure that prayer is truly where it all begins.
Have you asked for God's blessing upon your home today? If not, please join me and may our Heavenly Father grant us to see the fruit of our prayers in our marriages, in our homes, and in the lives of our children.