Thursday, November 18, 2010

Thoughtful Thursday- A radical thought

I love HGTV. It's probably my most favorite channel, and I am a fan of nearly every show. I love househunting with the folks on House Hunters, watching houses get staged for selling on several other shows, and the design shows are my most favorite. I watch and start thinking about how much I need to do to get my house fixed up, how my kitchen needs a total overhaul, how my carpets are filthy and our allergies would all be much better with hardwoods, laminates or tile. Those heated bathroom floors look so nice, it would be a dream come true to be able to step out of the shower and walk across the floor to get dressed with warm toasty toes. Oh, and Curb Appeal.... how I would adore having a big front porch, beautiful shrubbery wrapping around a curvy walkway, highlighted with colorful flowers. Change the siding and the colors of the shutters... neutral paint colors, not just white in every room inside... the list could go on for eternity.

A while back I started thinking,'If I just save a few dollars here and there, we could start working on making our home nicer.' It wouldn't take too much, just a few bucks here and there, instead of going through the drive thru, I could make a peanut butter sandwich. Instead of a bottle of water or Dr. Pepper, I could take my own drink or find a water fountain.  I could work on a little at a time, painting the rooms, changing the light fixtures, updating some furniture, maybe eventually having enough to do hardwoods in the whole house...

But in the last week, I was struck with a heavy conviction. Maybe God's been speaking the whole time, and I wasn't listening. Maybe it's because I am reading "Radical" by David Platt. A suggestion.... get the book, read it... take off your steel toes and let the words smack you in the face a few times... see if you don't feel totally different.

I never thought I was a "keeping up with the Jones" kind of person. I have never been financially wealthy, and was not raised to think that "things" are important. But when you see these houses on TV that are soooo beautiful, so comfortable, feeding all of my senses, it's hard not to want it all....

Here's what I'm coming to realize....

I have a home. My house is so much more than sufficient to meet the needs of my family. It's rather amazing that we are blessed with the space we have for the money we paid for it. My kids are blessed with their own rooms. We have a bonus room that is now our play room. Our home sits on enough land that we aren't sharing much space with anyone else.

Even more, I have a home that has a roof. My kitchen has a stove/oven that works, a fridge that keeps my food cold, and a nice dishwasher that's a little more than a year old. We have floors, not just dirt. We have light at night, cold air in the summer and heat in the winter. I have a washer and dryer, and even though they don't have all of the bells and whistles available, they clean my clothes just fine.

Do I really need any home improvements? Sure, my central air system needs to be upgraded.If my roof leaks, of course, we'll want to get it fixed. When things wear out, I will definitely want to fix or replace them, And if we upgrade in the process, maybe that's okay, But where does having a kitchen with granite countertops, custom cabinets, tile floors, pendant lighting, and stainless steel appliances fit into God's plan for how my money, or my time, or my life for that matter, should be spent?

I'm not condemning anyone who wants to make their home "better". I am not a judge ordained by God to say that you are wrong or right. But what are you doing to invest in His Kingdom with your time, talent and treasure? Personally, as much as I will struggle with this for probably the rest of my life, I would much rather take the money I've been saving and invest it in something that is eternal. Something like sharing God's love with other people. Feeding the hungry. Clothing the naked. Providing shelter for the homeless. Ministering to the widows and orphans. When I know that there are people in our very own community who don't even know where their next meal will come from, or if they will have a warm place to stay tonight, it's rather shallow for me to cling to the idea that I need a new kitchen.

I guess it all comes down to this:

God has provided for my every need. We are able to live off of my husband's salary, and I am blessed to be able to stay at home with my kids. We have never gone hungry, nor have we had to worry about warmth, clothing, medical care, etc... We have been blessed with more than we can contain. And here's the kicker- Jesus says in Luke 12 that we don't even have to worry about our basic needs being met... as long as we are seeking first the Kingdom of God. When we are saving for the "luxuries" of this world, we tend to take our eyes off of the one who is our ultimate Provider, and start dwelling on our temporary junk. Instead, Jesus tells us to sell our possessions and give to the poor. As Charles Spurgeon put it, "Not only give to the poor till you pinch yourself, but even pinch yourself to do it." Give til it hurts. Give until you can't afford your dream kitchen. Give in a manner that will show others that there is a loving God who has given His very own Son as the one and only Sacrifice worthy enough to be made on our rotten sinful behalf. I would hate to think that I saved all this money to renovate a kitchen that will not follow me to my eternal home, when instead I could have been investing in the eternal souls of the people around me...

What else are we treasuring in our lives that will waste away to nothing in time? What are we really willing to sacrifice for God?

Just some food for thought...


  1. I love this!! it's funny how sometimes wanting can get the better of us, it happens to us all.


  2. Good to see you back in the blogging world. :) xoxo


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