Finding Home Sweet Home

Kim Greenleaf

Kim has been on the ministry team at Washington Alliance part time for seven years, and one of her greatest passions is kids and families and seeing them find Jesus irresistible.

As I look around at my less than tidy home, I am reminded that life is hectic, and it’s time for me to catch up on some cleaning and organizing tasks. The many demands of life while raising three boys can be downright overwhelming at times. The weekly schedule of church, school, sports, appointments, work responsibilities, shopping, cooking, never-ending laundry….leaves me feeling spent to say the least! There is very little time for serious cleaning and organizing projects.

I know this current season of my life will not last forever and that I need to cherish the years of raising my boys. Do I long for an HGTV approved home? Definitely!

Does a clean and organized house bring peace? It most certainly does! I love it when everything is in its place in every room of my house! When my family can find things on their first attempt (or maybe second….I live with 4 males, remember?)….it is such a stress-reliever!

However, more than a stylish, very organized, and spotless house, I want a home that my family considers sweet.

Their “home sweet home” – a place where they can experience true rest, comfort, safety, and peace, a place where they can be themselves and be loved unconditionally.

I love the words in Proverbs 15:17. “Better is a dish of vegetables where love is than a fattened ox served with hatred.”

What a strong message in so few words! 

Is my love for Christ and my family spilling out into my home to help make it a sweet place?  I try so hard, but there are times when I feel like I fail miserably. My frustrations, impatience, and selfishness creep their ugly heads into my home more often than I care to admit. Such attitudes rob my family of their “home sweet home.” 

Sure, my children still need disciplined, the house still needs order, and tasks still need to be accomplished.

However, is the overall atmosphere in my home one of tension and stress or patience and forgiveness?

Isn’t it crazy how one person’s attitude can have such a profound impact on others? Unfortunately, bad attitudes are contagious! If I am constantly frustrated and upset, how am I helping set a tone of peace and love? Are my words sweet like honey (Prov. 119:103)? How can I build a sweet home if my words are bitter?

The words of Proverbs 15: 1-2 are great reminders for me – “A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger. The tongue of the wise adorns knowledge, but the mouth of the fool gushes folly.”

These truths are convicting. Does my family find our home a place where gentle words abound, or are harsh words more dominate? Is the atmosphere one where my family actually wants to be? Are words edifying? Are we safe to be “ourselves”? Is laughter common? Is God’s Word at the forefront of our daily life? Is forgiveness quickly given?

Yes, I want a beautifully organized and decorated house. More than that I long for a home that is inherently sweet. It is humbling to think that as a wife and mother, I have great influence in the overall pulse of my home. With God’s constant help, my home can be sweet.

This week, I think I will decorate my home for fall and serve lots of vegetables!