Tuesday, October 29, 2013

THE LAST CHALLENGE: Making Your Home a Haven Wk.4

Hey Ladies! It's the last week of Courtney's Challenge. I hope you have been following. In fact, if you have, leave a comment about what you did! - Rejoicing in the Present
We are to our final week of our Making Your Home a Haven Fall Series…and the holidays are almost upon us!
First up, Thanksgiving and on the heels of Thanksgiving is Christmas!  And typically with the holidays comes decorating.  I so desire to make my home warm and cozy for the family.
Think for a moment about how God has surrounded us in the fall season with scenery that is just gorgeous! If you live where trees change colors, the bright reds, oranges and yellows on the trees display God’s glory!
Think about the crackle of dry leaves below your feet as you walk – the same crackle sound you heard when you were 5 you hear at 55. There is a continuity about the remembrance of the crisp air and the smell of a bonfire that brings joy and peace. In the same way, our holiday decorations that we pull out year in and year out bring continuity, memories and a warm glow to our homes.
Though heaven is our eternal home, God has given us gifts of beauty here on earth – there is beauty in the fields covered with snow, in the sunset over a chilled pond, the frost in the morning on the blades of grass and smoke rising from the chimneys.
Our homes are temporary but they are an opportunity to reflect God in a small measure. Genesis 1:26 says “Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, in our likeness.”
We have been created in the image of God and some may be very talented in the area of decorating while others are like me – not the queen of decorating –  but we all have the ability to create something special for our loved ones.
Edith Shaefer says “For the Christian who is consciously in communication with the Creator, surely his home should reflect something of the artistry, the beauty and order of the One whom he is representing, and in whose image he has been made!”
God has given you a home whether it’s an apartment you share, a farm house, a city home, or a home identical to all your neighbors – it is your ONE home to reflect God’s artistry in.
Here is this week’s challenge:
Imagine – plan – Decorate! The holidays are almost upon us.  Ann Voskamp says “Creating is good theology.  In the beginning God created.”  Be creative as you make your home warm, cozy and inviting for the holidays.  Think about ways you can keep Christ in Christmas even in the way you decorate.  Give thanks to God for the home He has given you in which to create a haven for your family.

thanksgiving journal
To go along with the second half of this week’s challenge – I’d like to share one of our Thanksgiving traditions.
I started a family ”Thanksgiving Journal” 5 years ago. Every year on Thanksgiving, I sit down with the family and have them list some of the things they are thankful for.  Then I write them into the journal. It is so fun to reflect back over the years and see the blessings God has brought into our lives – year – by – year.
The turkey in the picture above is something the kids make each year.  I have them write on the feathers things they are thankful for and I add them to our journal each year.
Some of the things listed give me a chuckle –like when 3 year old Alexis gave thanks for sparkling grape juice…a treat we had with our Thanksgiving Dinner or when 5 year old Alex gave thanks for Ohio State Football! lol!  Also, toys like their pillow pets and Wii made the list along with some favorite books and vacations.  The yearly lists bring back memories of friends and favorite teachers and life happenings – everything is recorded so we can rejoice again and again over the abundant blessings God has given us in our lives.
If you are looking for a Thanksgiving tradition and treasure to implement in your home – this is an inexpensive way to bless your family.
And remember – give thanks to God for the ONE home he has given YOU to make a haven for his glory!
Chime In:  How has God used this 4 week series in your home?
Walk with the King,

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