Sunday, December 14, 2014

Being A Guest at Home

Hello Dear Ladies,

The paintings today are by Judy Gibson. I love that some of her paintings depict the inside of the home. 

 There are some ladies who can make a home anywhere. I knew someone who had spent a lot of time in a hotel room, while her husband conducted business in a certain town. She brought her own furnishings in the way of cushions, quilts and rugs, and also her own dishes and a tea set. She had pictures in little stand-up frames, and her books and things. There she invited friends sometimes to visit her. She had a sewing machine and made a quilt while living in temporary circumstances.

While we often reserve our best for guests, let us today consider how we may enjoy the comforts of our own homes when we do not have guests.  How about treating yourself and your family to all the niceties and luxuries you would normally save for visitors?

 It is not always possible to get people to agree to accept hospitality and this can be disappointing.  I would like to share a few things that my family did during what we call our "wilderness years"; a time when other people's lives were too busy to accept an invitation to an evening at home. We often would put it in our minds that we were the invited guests, by changing our home into a lodge in the mountains, a resort by the sea, a house on the prairie.  To be a guest was quite an experience, and children always played it up to the fullest.  

When I was growing up in a log home in the wilderness of Alaska, my mother taught us how to occupy our time during the winter months when one dark day seemed the same as the next. She would take us on train trips,  boat trips, horse and carriage rides,  and visits to other places just by arranging the chairs to resemble the mode of travel. She used blankets and other things to create the scenery and we children had no difficulty imagining the rest. In the summer, we went on adventurous vacations without leaving home. With sheets fresh off the line, our bedrooms became fancy hotel rooms in another place.

In the seriousness of our personal lives and the culture around us, Christian ladies sometimes feel that it is too self-indulgent to enjoy the things at home that would usually be offered to guests, but even Jesus went away to be alone and be refreshed. (Matthew 14:13,23) We ladies at home need both spiritual and physical rest and revival if we are to have a sound mind to create a home and guide our families.

Ladies have to be careful not to be so realistic and practical that life loses its enjoyable side.

"I used to wait for company before I felt I could light the fireplace or make tea in my favorite tea set. I never thought I needed to pamper myself in any way, and now have seen the value of it. " writes a friend. She also recognized that while she attended several Bible studies during the week, that she needed her own personal Bible study time where her mind could relax and take in things at her own pace.  

Ladies I hope you will remember each day to do something of comfort and personal revival for yourself and not think it should always be saved for someone else. Helen Andelin spoke of this sort of thing in her book, "Fascinating Womanhood" when she wrote that women should try to maintain self-dignity by taking care of themselves. I agree with that.  Sometimes home life can be so busy that it is easy to neglect your appearance or your little luxuries like sitting in your own living room to catch up on reading and other things that make you feel relaxed.

There are those in the world who believe a homemaker does not deserve to have any leisure because she is "not working" (in their view) but guiding the home and keeping the home is not always about physical work. It is about being content and inspiring others to be their best. Sometimes all it takes to accomplish that is to take care of yourself.

I hope you will click on this song and be encouraged by it. The words say, "Turn your eyes upon Jesus; look full in His wonderful face." One way to spiritually "see" the "face of Jesus is to read His word that He revealed.  Reading the New Testament will show you the "face" of Jesus, and give you understanding of this life and His purpose for you. If you spent 15 minutes a day reading the New Testament, you would be able to complete the entire testament in a short while and "look full in His wonderful face."

Please click on the picture below and hear the song. 

Thank you for your encouraging comments and for all you do for me and other homemakers who blog, for the churches and for your families.

If you have never left a comment, it is easy to click on the word "comments" and a space will appear for you to write. I love hearing from you! And, if you are new to this blog, please look around and check the blog-roll on the left that features other ladies who share their homes and their talents.


Housewife59 said...

Thank you for this wise post and the beautiful and calming pictures. Little things that we do for ourselves can make us feel uplifted, it's true. In the mornings I like to put a touch of make-up on and put my hair back in a pretty slide. I also like to put on some lipstick with a lip brush. I may be at home all day and not meet anyone, but I take the time for me because it is a pleasure. Then I wipe over the basin with some glass cleaning spray, so it's lovely and shiny. It just makes me smile!

Anonymous said...

Oh Lydia...what a lovely, lovely post. I have been a home maker and housewife for over 20 years, and it took me quite awhile to realize, that my husband deserved to eat in the good dishes, and that my children deserved a pretty home, even though there were no guests coming.

We tend to forget ourselves in the hustle and bustle of everyday life, but it is so sad when we do. Because when we have a smile on our faces and surrounded by pretty things, the world smiles with us :0)

Thank you again for your lovely words. It is such a pleasure to always stop by here and leave encouraged and refreshed.


Christine said...

Sometimes it's hard to give permission to ourselves, to encourage ourselves with simple pleasures.
Thank you for the permission. I appreciate your words.

Lydia said...

Lesley I think caring for your face and hair has a great impact on your morale and courage. You may spend the entire day alone but just neglect your appearance one day and that is the day the delivery people and the post and the neighbor and the repair people etc all come to your door! Even if no one sees you, God does amd you dress to glorify Him. Home is as important or more than a business and we give homemaking a good reputation by our care of our appearance.

Unknown said...

Thank you for this great post. I have felt guilty at times for enjoying leisure in my home. I always felt I had to be working on something to prove I was productive. My husband has never put this on me but in fact encourages me to rest, especially since I have disabilities. I enjoy my home more than any place else on earth. I can make it a haven within four walls despite the torrential news that seeks to destroy my peace. Blessings dear sister...Mrs. Kelly Thompson

Finding Joy said...

If you don't use these pretty things, they just sit in the cupboard collecting dust and what a waste is that. There is nothing nicer than eating from a nice plate or drinking from a pretty mug!

I remember as a teenage I was given a beautiful candle and I refused to use it as it was just so pretty. Over the years it became discoloured, the dust stuck to it and it lost its gloss and I really wished I had used it when it was new. I have remembered that candle down the years and now use things when they are at their best to get the full enjoyment from them.

Katrinka said...

I really enjoy the photos. So warm and cozy and inviting. My schedule has turned backwards. I used to get a lot done in the mornings and rest a bit in the afternoons. But now my husband dozes in his chair in the mornings and I sit by him and read my Bible and do computer work or read a book. In the afternoon when he's more restless is when I do my chores.

I am so much enjoying the quiet, peaceful mornings together. I can restfully look out the window or even do some needlework I started. I never organized my day this way before, but being forced into it, I enjoy it very much.

Julian said...

Thankyou for the reminder. Home is where we should use the nicest things, and the extra touches , especially for our family and not save them for the guests. I've been learning
that. They are the special people in our lives.

Melissa M. said...

Thank you for your beautiful and inspiring words!