THE CHRISTIAN HOME
We all know how, when we go into some homes, we don’t feel at home there. Whereas in other homes, right from the moment we enter, they make us feel completely at home. It is difficult to explain this feeling, but we all know it.
A Christian home must be a place where Jesus feels completely at home. That means that He is happy about everything He sees there. He is happy about the books we read, the magazines we get, the conversation between husband and wife, the things we talk about, the programmes we watch on TV, and everything else. In many Christian homes, they have Bible verses hanging on the wall. But Jesus does not feel at home there.
God At The Centre
Can you imagine with what tremendous anticipation God brought Adam and Eve together? What wonderful plans He had for them as a Father! He hoped that they would have a wonderful home where He would always be first. But how soon God was disappointed! He was not angry with them, He was sad. I believe there is a lot of sadness in God’s heart today when He sees the condition of many a Christian home, where there is no peace, but only quarrelling and fighting. They turn to Him only when they are in trouble. The people of the world turn to God only when they face some problems. But as Christians we are to be different. God is not an emergency number that we are to call when we are in some difficulty. No. God must be the Centre of our lives at all times.
God’s word has been given to us exactly like the ‘Manufacturer’s Instructions’ that we get with any gadget that we buy. All of us are so careful after buying an electronic gadget to follow those instructions exactly. If your gadget has some problem and you take it to the manufacturer, the first question he will ask you will be, “Did you follow the manufacturer’s instruction booklet exactly?” In fact, in most guarantee cards it is clearly written that the guarantee becomes invalid if you don’t follow the instructions exactly.
The wonderful thing about God, however, is that when we go to Him with our messed-up life at any time, He is still willing to rectify it. His is not a one-year guarantee! It’s a life-long one! If you come to Him with your broken life, He will straighten it out. That’s the wonderful thing about God – He is a loving Father. And it’s very important that we know that the One who is asking us to make a sanctuary for Him in our home is a loving Father. He is very, very interested in our lives and He wants us to be happy until the day that Jesus returns.
I can tell you that the most wonderful life we can ever live is one where Jesus is the Centre of our lives, and where everything in our home is determined by whether it makes Jesus happy or not – the way we spend our time, the way we spend our money, and the way we do everything else. If we live like that, then when we come to the end of our life, or if Christ returns before that, and we stand before Him, He will say, “Well done.” It won’t matter then what others thought about us.
A Holy Sanctuary
One characteristic of man is that he judges by the outward appearance. I did that myself for many years, when I was a legalist. But I now see more clearly that it is the heart that God looks at. It is important to remember that it’s our heart that should always be pure. Whether our home is a palace or a hut is secondary – the outward appearance is secondary. It’s our heart that God sees. So make sure that our hearts are together a sanctuary – a holy place – for God to dwell in.