WHAT MAKES A HOME

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It has been nearly 3 months since we moved. In that time we have spent nearly as much time at our new “home” as we have away from home. I did the math one day while Mr. M was in New York last month. Since we had moved he has been at our home 25 nights and over 30 nights some where else. We were gone so often we started just telling people we’ve lived here one month.  August hasn’t been as crazy and we’ve been here a lot more but it still left me feeling homeless. I felt like I didn’t know where I belonged. I had a home, but there wasn’t much ‘homey’ about it. I did (and still do) refer to where we lived as home. Every time we are there I feel home.

We are beginning to love living here more and more. We try and get out as much as possible to see and get to know where we live. We went for a little hike last week and found a tarantula. Who knew tarantulas lived here? We’ve gone swimming a few times, done a few bike rides, and went to a race at the Raceway. I’ve gone to our local farmer’s market, we go for walks, we go running in the park, we are getting involved in our church, and made a list of places and things we want to do before our little guy arrives. We’ve made photo collages, bought mirrors and shower curtains, we have tried to fill this space we call home. More and more I am finding a spot in my heart for this city. It has been a 3 month journey, but I’m finding home again.

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This feeling of homelessness made me wonder what makes a home? Why do I feel so blessed to be physically protected and cared for but still don’t feel home. I’ve studied principles of Interior Design, I know structurally what makes a home, but how can someone have a home and still feel homeless? How can you have a roof over your head, a bed, food, and everything you need but still feel that hole?

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As I sat in New York last month and felt even more of that distance, I wrote the following in my journal after Mr M and I went to the Manhattan Temple.

“I felt that because we’ve been gone more days than we’ve been home in the last 7 weeks, I’ve felt homeless. Nowhere and everywhere felt like home at the same time. It was quite the feeling to not have a place I felt I belonged, a refuge. But I found that in the temple of God.”

I feel like as a society we are lead to believe that “home” is something that can be built or bought. I live for the day I’m not paying rent and own a home. I dream about painting walls and remodeling projects, but those don’t create home either.  I believe that home is an inner peace. A peace that can be found in a variety or buildings, but is a peace that is woven through time and righteous decisions.

“Many voices from the world in which we live tell us we should live at a frantic pace. There is always more to do and more to accomplish. Yet deep inside each of us is a need to have a place of refuge where peace and serenity prevail, a place where we can reset, regroup, and reenergize to prepare for future pressures. The ideal place for that peace is within the walls of our own homes, where we have done all we can to make the Lord Jesus Christ the centerpiece.”Richard G. Scott, Quorum of the Twelve Apostles

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So my bare walls are becoming less bare. Remember what our place looked like when we moved in? But it isn’t pictures on a wall, pillows on a bed, or food in the cupboards that make a home. It is that feeling of peace and serenity that come from centering our lives around Jesus Christ. It isn’t about having a house that is Pinterest worthy. It’s not about Victorian Architecture or designer sofas. Those things fill space but they do not fill voids. The mirror above my fireplace didn’t make my home more peaceful or serene. It is the effort that we have put into centering our home and our lives on the gospel of Jesus Christ. I loved this final idea by Richard G. Scott.

“One of the greatest blessings we can offer to the world is the power of a Christ-centered home where the gospel is taught, covenants are kept, and love abounds.”Richard G. Scott, Quorum of the Twelve Apostles

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Larisa

Here’s a little about me: I usually don’t buy things that I could make. I like to read and learn. I have dreams of being a mom, living in foreign countries, and trying new things. I take a ton of pictures. I collect rocks from the places I’ve been. I’m trying to learn French. I like to eat. I’m a Mormon.

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