Sometimes it seems like what happens outside the home are more significant and valuable than what happens inside the home. Yet the perspective offered in the following article helps all of us remember that our home is a place for valuable ministry and investment.
We have a houseful of children now, and every day I work at home, feed them, clothe them, and laugh with them.
They are learning about who they are by looking around the table at dinner. They are learning about themselves by learning about the family around them. They are learning what kinds of jokes make this family laugh. They are learning about who God is and what he is like. They are accumulating experiences that could never be planned, never given outside the context of constant, unrelenting fellowship.
Experiences like this are not things that people collect like trinkets, to keep or discard as desired. They are accumulated like marks a sculptor makes while he works. They shape. They create. They change.
Our Tables Are Imitations
Your home life drastically shapes your children's lives. When you make cookies, you aren’t just fiddling around in the kitchen, wasting time. You are building people who grew up on those cookies—with that kind of warmth and experience in their lives. When you sit around the table, you are not sitting down just to eat. You are sitting down to eat with your people. More importantly you are sitting down to make your people, and be made yourself.
This is the way God designed it: we are made more like him around the table that he laid for us. Our first identity is around that table. Our tables at home are simply imitations of that one. They are the way our children learn about fellowship, about what it means to have a Father, about what it means to know who you are, and about who Jesus is.
First Generation Christians
I know many of you are first generation Christians and have no experience of what it means to grow up in a Christian home. You are thinking “Well, it is easy for you to say all this. You probably grew up in a Christian home.” I did, and it was a great mercy to grow up there. I thank God that I had faithful believers as parents, but that doesn't mean that it was just easy. You now have an opportunity and great mercy to pour into your children since they are not first generation Christians! They are growing up in a Christian home because of you. So be faithful and draw near to God and his Word. Pour yourself and the gospel into your kids, into who they are. There is more power in this work of yours than the world will know what to do with.
Where People Come From
Homes have been under attack for so long that we have a hard time even imagining how powerful they can be. We think of a “homemaker” as a woman cross stitching something to hang over the potpourri. We imagine domestic arts as something that is limited to people who didn’t pursue a real education. We might feel sheepish telling someone that we “just” stay at home. But that is nothing to be embarrassed about; our work at home means that God's word may not be reviled (Titus 2:5).
Homes are tremendously powerful places, because they are where people come from. There is no more important thing that you could be doing. You do not go home to hide from the world, you go home to change it.
(HT: The Resurgence)