That has been a long, agonizing, gut-wrenching process.
But God has used this extra difficult phase before actually owning our house to challenge us with a question: How will we use this house for the glory of God?
Colossians 3:17 says, “And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus…” and Proverbs 3:9 says, “Honor the Lord with your possessions…” We are going to be doing a lot of living in this house, which means lots of words and deeds, and once we own it, the house is clearly a possession. In other words, we need to be intentional about how we will steward this blessing if God chooses to give it to us.
This was something we were really convicted about at our apartment. We thought of our apartment as ours, as our place of refuge where we could get away from the world and kind of take a break from ministering to others. As we were moving, we realized just how selfish that really was.
We don’t want to make that mistake again, so here are some ideas we have come up with that will help us to think more intentionally about keeping our house available for how God may want to use it:
- Start a Bible study with someone. One-on-one Bible studies in our home could be a great way to disciple a friend in their growing faith or to even present the Gospel to someone for the first time. Just think, if you weren’t comfortable in a church setting, how much easier would it be to chat in a friend’s home? This is something we have recently been hearing a lot about, and it sounds like a really exciting way to use our home for the Lord!
- Hosting dinners, parties, game nights, coffee chats… Our homes can become places where people connect through fun and deep conversations. Whether that means our next door neighbors or church family members, God wants us to connect with others for our benefit and for theirs.
- Outreach. Whether it’s a backyard Bible club for kids, an event for your church, a small group, or something else entirely, our homes can be used to share the truth of the Savior with people. I mean, our houses sit right smack in the middle of neighborhoods full of people who need to hear about God’s grace! 6 ways to use your home for God's glory! Click To Tweet
- Letting people stay in our home. This is such an important way to show love and support to people who need it. For example, our church has missionaries come and share their mission with our church who sometimes need places to stay. Sometimes friends or family members need a place to live temporarily. I know Benjamin and I have been feeling the blessing of my parents letting us take over part of their house for the last 4 months!
- Use what’s in your house to serve others — your kitchen, your garage, your craft room. Make meals for a family going through a hard time or who just had a baby, bake cookies with kind notes for your neighbors, build something that a struggling family needs but just can’t afford… If we are blessed with skills and the space to use them in, let’s use that to show the love of Jesus to the people around us. I love what Benjamin’s sister is doing right now — she has used her kitchen to raise money for a charity by selling homemade cookies (she has orders for like 84 dozen!)
- Be sure to design your home to nurture your family. Our homes aren’t just for outreach or for bringing others in. First and foremost, they are to grow and guide your family. Be sure to be intentional about that. Design spaces where you can have fun with and spend time with your kids, create a place that is good for having heart-to-heart talks with one another, make a place where you and your spouse can get away to pray and to talk through problems. We can use our homes to encourage and strengthen our family members to revere and follow God.
The long and short of it is, God has given you life, breath, and possessions to share love and truth with a hurting world, and we need to be willing to let Him use anything and everything, including our homes.God has given you life, breath, and possessions. He wants us to use them for good! Click To Tweet
1 John 3:17 says, “But whoever has this world’s goods, and sees his brother in need, and shuts up his heart from him, how does the love of God abide in him?” If we have a comfortable, welcoming home and see someone who is lonely or hurting and aren’t reaching out to him, how can we say we are following the Savior?
I can’t wait to see how God works in our lives and the lives of others with this new house!
Share your story! What are some ways that you and your family have found to reach out to others with your home?