Original Post

The post below was written on Emily’s personal blog (Be Consecrated) in the summer of 2017 when she and Alex had returned from living in India for 6 months. It was primarily written for women to read, but the heart of this post applies to all. Please enjoy reading the original “Homemaking in Heaven” post.

What makes something beautiful? The way it’s placed? It’s color? It’s coordinated themes? Yes, partly all of these! When I walk into a home of a woman who has an eye for beauty… its quite breath taking and all those aspects are part of it! But I mean something a little more. Why do we humans adore things that have order and peruse what catches our eye? (In a good way)

These thoughts have been on my mind a lot in the last 10 months because… I have not had a home of my own to keep since that time! I think there is a natural desire in all woman, married or not, to have a place, to settle down, to nest and really – to make things beautiful! I adore ladies who have the ability and talent to make what they have a haven and refuge where beauty can grow. This is a blessing from God and given to nurter and pour out on others, there is nothing wrong with that! However, here are some more thoughts of mine that I have been meditating on since I have not had a home:

What happens when you have no place to make beautiful? What about if you can’t settle or nest and there is no certainty of what your will have or do next? This is my real subject today. When you have nothing physical, what do you make beautiful when you are wired to pour out and make things beautiful?
This first thought came to me in December of 2016, Christmas Eve. We moved that day into a small bedroom in Northern India and a wave of longing for tradition and family hit me. That is not unexpected since in the Christmas season you desire to be around family – but 6 months and 4 moves later I am actually still in that spot and it’s been pressed on my heart lately.

{Homemaking in Heaven. Making that which truly matters, beautiful}

Do not let your adorning be external—the braiding of hair and the putting on of gold jewelry, or the clothing you wear—But let your adorning be the hidden person of the heart with the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which in God’s sight is very precious. For this is how the holy women who hoped in God used to adorn themselves, by submitting to their own husbands…” 1 Peter 3:3-5

In the Word, it describes our bodies as a temple (the home of God) and the resting place of His spirit! A physical home is a resting place that woman delights in making beautiful and suitable for guests to come inside. I am convicted and amazed at what this verse above is really saying to us! It’s not just a list of do’s and dont’s as one of the only verses specifically written to woman … get this… it is actually setting an example of a woman who is identified FIRST by her hope and identity in her God. It is saying your heart should be the most beautiful thing about you, and a gentle and quiet spirit is a result of a woman who is satisfied, not nagging, not worried, not fearful – but fulfilled in her God! Her hope is set on something above! Not on the hair style, the jewelry or the house… Just her God! What would allow you to best submit to your husband and be satisfied in his leadership, other than an overflowing trust and submission to your first love, Jesus?!

Our homes are a precious place to have – but our souls were given first. These questions have been roused often as my husband and I have walked through recent transitions: How orderly is your inward life? What is your identity on the inside being defined by right now? What is flowing out and able to be poured out on others? How much effort do you make at setting your heart straight before the Lord? Is hope in the Lord what brings your the most comfort?
I believe it is God’s nature to be orderly, matching and beautiful which is why we naturally long for these things. But I also believe our souls are to brilliantly shine and reflect His nature and image! With our eyes set on the most beautiful, put together, trust worthy person of all – our inner woman will OVERFLOW with what He looks like! This is beauty – looking like Him.

In conclusion – set your heart on Him. The rest of life WILL line up when He is first. Be about HIS kingdom. Your greatest foundation is your identity in Jesus Christ.

But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.” Matthew 6:33

If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth. For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ who is your life appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.” Colossians 3:1-4

Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” Matthew 6:19-21

Men and Homemaking?

We do not usually associate the idea of homemaking with men. We tend to have less of a nesting instinct. I do not labor and brainstorm over interior decor the way my wife does. For my own part, I do not mind sleeping on a couch or stepping over socks on the way to the shower. 

But as man, I have my own way of homemaking, don’t I? Some people might call it kingdom-building. I like to surround myself with things that are comfortable for me. And I like to have  something to show for all my hard work. I want my skills to be recognized. Ultimately, I want people to value what I have and what I can do. 

Think about this example. I work for an internet company. There are at least two ways for my job to grow in value. The company can grow, thus increasing the worth of my position. Or I can grow within the company, acquiring new responsibilities and prestige. Both of these enhance my presentation of my work to other people. This boosts my identity and status when I speak about it to impress my friends. 

Now let me ask you this. What is the real difference between this example and my wife redecorating our home so she can post about it on Instagram? Is there any? Maybe outwardly, but the heart is the same. In these scenarios, we are both after identity. The problem is not in being promoted at work and telling people about it. The problem is not in redecorating the house and posting pictures about it. The problem is giving those things a place in our identity they have no right to have. 

I can easily question the motive behind redecorating and Instagram. But do I challenge myself? What is my motive behind playing volleyball with my friends? What fuels my drive to get a degree? What drives my conversations with people about my job? Now we can see the problem is not with just woman or just men. The breakdown is at the core of every human heart. We all want to be seen. We all need an identity. 

This need is not bad. No one can live without an identity. Identities give hope and structure, without which no one can function. But identities are not forged in kingdoms or homes. You can’t make them on the sports field or on Instagram. A stable and secure identity comes from only one place. God has a monopoly on true identity. As the creator, He is the only one who can truly say who we are. He supplies what we desperately need. 

What would it look like if we lived everything we did from this God-given identity? We would not be chasing identity, but displaying the one that He has established for us. We could stop trying to maintain our citizenship of this world and build our kingdom and our home in Him. This is what challenges me as a man. This is how I want to lead my family. My earthly kingdom is not preeminent; the heavenly one where I am going is the endgame. 

Only one life t’will soon be past, only what’s done for Christ shall last.” – C.T. Studd

Introduction

“Aim for heaven and you get earth thrown in, aim for earth and you get neither.” C.S. Lewis

We’ll be honest. This blog really has nothing to do with homemaking. You won’t find a woman’s expert opinion of the “top 10 ways to have the modern minimalist farm house dream“, though those kind of blogs are intriguing and certainly not bad, we don’t want to give the wrong impression. This blog is meant to speak to the heart of every human (male and female) who are made to create, beautify, strengthen, store up and work diligently! We are humans, given life in order to reflect and glorify God. We do this primarily through what we invest most of our time into.

What you will find here is the way both a man and a woman learn as they desire to see Christ fill all areas of life. From brushing our teeth to talking with co-workers, from changing diapers to doing dishes – all have purpose when done in light of eternity. We hope that the things we learn and share with you in daily life will press you on to look more deeply to Christ in every area of your life too. He is our goal.

Homemaking in Heaven is really just a glorified way of saying “building up treasure in heaven instead of earth” (Matthew 6:21). It’s a phrase that reminds us to to put our hearts not on things of this earth but to look to Christ for our satisfaction and fulfillment. We are not extremists who believe money is bad or that having a home and financial security is unspiritual. It merely is a reminder to our hearts to be set on things of God and not on our all too natural longing for earthly security.

With that we both welcome you to this journey of looking to Jesus in all areas! It could include missions, mothering, fiber optics, friendship making, stories of the past or wonderings of the future – but all with one point. To gain Christ. To be identified by Him alone.