Our Ideal Home

Sunrise in Crazyville.

I used to have a vision of what my home would be like. It had a large wrap around porch on a piece of property outside the city with an interior design that would impress Joanna Gaines herself. It would feel warm and cozy and always smell like sugar cookies. And inside would be a peaceful place where everyone was content and happy.

In reality the outside of my home looks like a giant cube. It was build in the 1970’s and apparently someone thought it was a good design. In fact when it was for sale I refused for weeks to go look at it. I thought it was so ugly from the outside there was no way I was going to like the inside. The only reason I agreed to check it out was to get Matt to stop bugging me. He thought it was so cool and really wanted to go see it.

When I walked in the front door, I knew I was going to be swallowing some major pride. I loved it. I knew it was home. As much fun as it was to admit to my husband that he was right and I was wrong, it was totally worth it. Now don’t get me wrong, I still don’t like the boring cube shape and I will never get to enjoy a wrap around porch, but I love this home. In fact, my plan is to live here until I die. One of the greatest things about my home besides the space, incredible view, and lovely neighbors, is I can have dinner delivered right to my bedroom door. Due to the odd structure of the house, our bedroom has sliding doors that lead right to the front deck. So, if I’m feeling like pizza, I can order it, slide open my bedroom door and take it directly from the hands of the Domino’s delivery driver. Now that’s living!

The inside of my home doesn’t always smell like sugar cookies, and well, it’s not always calm and peaceful. There is a lot of laughter, joy, and wonderful memories being made here inside these walls every day. There are also a lot of hurts being healed along the way, at least I hope so. We are parents to some kids from hard places. Some of our kids have experienced and survived heartbreaking trauma in their lives. This causes big feelings to surface in our home from time to time. And those big feelings tend to be quite loud and give no consideration for the feelings of others. And most often those big feelings are thrown at me.

Recently, after dealing with several days of loud feelings, I was quite worn out. I found myself quietly crying on the deck of our house. I just needed some quiet. I was so disappointed in the lack of peace currently in my home. I had envisioned a place of sanctuary and it was feeling a little more like a war zone. The worst part is it felt like my fault. I have read so many books and attended so many trainings on how to care for children who have been through trauma. But my tired soul was certain if I was just a better mom then the big feelings would subside and my house would be the sanctuary I had always envisioned.

In that moment I felt Jesus whisper to my fragile heart. In order to welcome the broken I needed to let go of the perfection in my mind. If I made my home the sanctuary I was envisioning it would not leave room to invite the hurting into it. I was giving sanctuary to them. The sacrifice was sometimes losing it for myself. So at times there are loud feelings around here. I’m learning it’s not because I am a bad mom. It’s because I have welcomed the wounded and messy into my life. I am their safe place. And when I feel tired and worn, I turn to Jesus because He is my sanctuary and safe place.