It has been four years since I became a full time homemaker/stay at home mum whatever title you want to put on there. I mean homemaker sounds lovely and all but we are all homemakers in some way. I truly am in awe of women who juggle jobs, childcare, other commitments as well as creating loving warm environments to care for their families. I don’t know how they do it!
It has been a steep learning curve and a humbling experience staying at home, one that I wanted, it was a choice I made before I had children, before I was married or even engaged. We discussed it and we both felt strongly that for us and our family I really wanted to be at home if we were fortunate to have children.
Homemaking for me was such a passionate choice because I had so few years with my own mother but they were the most impactful years of my life.
Our home had a sense of fun, she made the mundane tasks seem hilarious, my sister and I would run around screaming being chased by the vacuum, jumping onto the sofa so she couldn’t catch us. We would dance around while she ironed clothes as we passed her more items so the task could be completed quicker and so many other fond memories.
It sounds idyllic and all so simple and yet I only now realise now how intentional my mother had to be to make those monotonous tasks fun.
I now know that when my own boys run around screaming and jumping in front of me, whatever I am doing takes so much longer.
How frustrating it can be to can be cooking with a three year old whose hand is in everything, that the thought of homemade cookies doesn’t sound so appealing.
All this came to mind back in December when I was spending some time studying Matthew. One of the things I love about Bible study and the Word of God is no matter how many times you have read a passage new things will jump out at you. I often ask myself how did I miss that, and so it was with that particular morning;
When you enter someone’s household, say “Shalom aleikhem! (Peace be upon you) If the home deserves it, let your peace rest in it;if not, let your peace return to you.
Those verses are nestled between the disciples shaking dust off their feet and not worrying about what they should say or not say, which always seemed a bit more gripping to me, but not that morning, it was all I could think about in Jesus words where he talks about peace.
Jesus speaks of a peace that is tangible, so overwhelming you can feel it, it spreads outwards, towards something, dwells there, rests there, a noticeable presence that cannot be mistaken. God is in that house, you can’t create it, fake it, manipulate it or coerce it, for it can be retracted and returned.
When I think of this I long for my home to have the tangible peace that Jesus speaks of both for my family who live here and for the friends that pass through.
For peace and rest to dwell in my home, I have to let go of my plans, my ideals, assumptions perhaps that I have for the day. I need to allow things to take a little longer, look for opportunities and take time to play silly games with my children and build the biggest fort.
I need to be sensitive to those in my home, what does peace feels like to them? For some people peace might be a full room with lots of furniture, ornaments, things on surfaces everywhere, for us that would be the furthest from peace you could imagine.
I have to say yes to the unexpected guest, to those in need of a safe space as well as those who lets be honest overstay my ideal of what is a suitable length of time is for a visit.
Who knows what God could do there, what an extra thirty minutes might bring out for that person or how our home might help them in some way.
Ultimately I cannot create this peace it is all from God, I can surrender to what he would like to do with my home, time and abilities just like any circumstance in life or I close this are of my life off and place little value on it.
I would love to hear from you, how do you create a peaceful home? Where do you feel God is leading you with your homemaking?