I don’t know about you, but I love interior design (if you haven’t figured that out already). The thought of having my own house someday where all of my design ideas are put into place, all of my ducks in a row, and everything organized sounds like heaven.
When you make something your home, you abide there. When you abide somewhere you make it your home. Jesus calls us to abide in Him by making Him our home, our safe space, our comfort, and our protection. When we abide in Him, He comes to take residence in us and, just like we’re at home in Him, He makes our souls His home.
Lately I feel as if God has been rearranging my home. I don’t mean my home in Iowa or my dorm room, but my mental cozy bubble where I run to when life gets out of control. I got ahead of myself when I asked, “Lord, I want you to transform every inch of my life for your glory.” But then I cry, “except that part, Lord!”
Our souls are like the houses on Fixer Upper: broken, run down, on the market for too long, slowly diminishing in value from the lack of care. And in our pride we tell God we’re fine and don’t need His help fixing the foundation or the leaky roofs. When we claim He can take over our lives and that we’re here to follow His plan, most of the time it means one bedroom and some landscaping or one thing we’re “okay” with giving up.
He can work on His little room under the stairs and on all the landscaping He wants, but to let Him tear down walls that we’ve put up to keep our hearts safe from opening up to change…that’s different.
John 15:4-9 says, “‘Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me. ‘I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. If you do not remain in me, you are like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned. If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples. ‘As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love.’”
The Son of God wants to live in our broken down homes and make them new. That means we cannot fix them by ourselves. Talk about a do-it-yourself disaster!
In order for Jesus to take up permanent residency in our homes we need to let Him knock down some walls, get rid of some doors and install new ones, open up rooms, and paint new colors on the walls.
“No, not that wall,” we say. “That one is up so the world thinks I’m a hard-working student who always gets straight A’s.”
“Wait! Don’t close that door. Look at all of those guys lining up to ask me out. Who cares if they aren’t godly, at least my confidence is up because I’m wanted.”
“No, no. Don’t paint that color. That doesn’t go with the theme of me having it all together.”
“What are you doing? That room is full of my sins! Don’t knock down those walls to open the floor plan!”
“Hold on, not my kitchen. That’s where my cook all of my dreams and desires. What if they get crumbled in the renovation?”
If we are to live in Christ, we’ve got to let Him build a house. It’s vital that we let Him make us into something new because without Him we’re just homes with cracked windows and sagging door frames.
Jesus is saying to us, “if you’d only trust me and give me full power in the construction and after, I’ll make you into a home worthy for kings and queens full of life, love, and laughter.”
“Imagine yourself as a living house. God comes in to rebuild that house. At first, perhaps, you can understand what He’s doing. He’s getting the drains right and stopping the leaks in the roof, and so on; you knew that those jobs needed doing and so you’re not surprised. But presently He starts knocking the house about in a way that hurts abdominally and doesn’t make any sense. What on earth is He up to? The explanation is that He is building a quite different house from the one you thought of — throwing out a new wing here, putting on an extra floor there, running up towers, and making courtyards. You thought you were being made into a decent little cottage: but He is building a palace. He intends to come live in it Himself.” –C.S. Lewis
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