First of all, we're back home. I've been too busy (and exhausted) to get online and churn out an entry, so... sorry for the delay.
You know, children truly are a blessing. The bible says that children are a heritage from the Lord. I am reminded that children are the only immortal things we can make as humans. They are the only eternal thing we produce (through the grace of God, of course). When I think of it on those terms, I realize what a HUGE responsibility parenting is.
I love children. I look forward to having more... if God so allows, and enjoying my three wee ones as they grow into not-so-wee-ones. Merika keeps telling me we're going to have a large family..... a full house of "brothers and sisters". Here's one of her drawings.
I lived in that house for seventeen years. But, when I looked back at the house as I talked to the neighbors I grew up with, I saw just a shell. It didn't have the spirit of home.
What makes a house a home? And how is it, the house I grew up in, the house that as home for so long, even after I left it, doesn't hold that home feeling anymore? Home is where the heart is, and now, that house belongs to someone else.
Still, so many memories surround it. It's a nice house, in a wonderful neighborhood.... neighborhoods like that are rare. I watched the people work together to drag loads of fallen trees and branches to the curb... children helping where they could. Man, poor people- without electricity for days... and couldn't even flush their toilets because the sewage was backed up. No telling when that will all be worked out. Still, they worked together, joked, laughed, and helped each other. Maybe the destruction from the hurricane will bring more communities together. Communities- people working together, helping one another- assist in that "home feeling".
Building a home takes work. Building a home takes time. But home is something that isn't made up of brick or siding. Home isn't about your furniture or decor. Home is about the heart. You don't have to rebuild home every time you move. You can take home with you. It's the heart n it... the love, the memories, the structure, the beliefs, the smiles....
I've been reading Home-Making by J.R. Miller (written in 1882). It's such a beautiful, beautiful book. Actually, I finished it in one day... it's just so beautiful. It's not about cooking or cleaning... it's about making a home. It's about marriage, about roles, discipling children, dealing with death.... it's a book for women and men, married or single.
"The house with its provision for the daily needs of the lower life, duly ordered and graciously illumined, is the trellis within which affections intertwine, and loving hearts, growing out into efflorescent richness, build up the home." (A quote of a quote in the book.) Miller calls homes "the divinely ordained fountains of life". As parents, we have the power to bring our homes (and children) blessings or curses by the way we manage it. Pretty powerful stuff.
Anyway... I don't know if I'm making any sense. I'm tired and my thoughts are scattered all over the place- tied together in my heart.. which is hard to explain in type.
I'll leave you with this sweet picture of this beautiful "work of art" displayed over our couch. (Hehe!) Beautiful, don't you think?
Btw- what makes a house feel like home to you? What memories... smells, sights, sounds... remind you of home?