Wednesday, February 8, 2012

If This House Could Speak

If this house could speak, it would fill volumes. Unspeakable volumes. More than I'd know to write.

The walls would talk of the red juice stains that have repeatedly been painted over, but are quickly replaced with new ones. They would tell tales about how each mark got its permanent place--a dent from a fallen frame here. A smudge of muddy hands there. A long red strip down the bar's wall where we rode our outside toys inside when the sun was beating down ruthlessly one summer.

The poor carpet. It would sing of times spent wrestling in the floor with daddy, laughing and squealing with excitement. Of picnics in the floor while watching Elmo, Dora, and Veggie Tales. It would tell how it cradled little babies as they slept and played on its surface. It captured the moments of first crawls, first steps, first bumps and bruises. It would complain of all the days and nights spent having trenches walked in it as we shushed a colicky baby. And it would be lying if it said we hadn't taken a toll on its fibers. Heaven knows--we have.

The bathtub would rave of all the bubbles it held, the loud songs it contained, and the memories that were made almost nightly at 7:00pm. And it might tell that it secretly knew it was my secret for sanity since Daddy's almost always on bath duty.

My poor couch would tell a painful tale: of drink spills, diaper leaks, sleepless nights, bouncing children, chocolate stains, and bearing the weight of the exhausted parents at the end of the night. That couch has seen the worst of us.

But if my house could speak of all these things, it might then tell the truth. The whole truth. It might tell what goes beyond surface level stains and wear and tear. It would be real in its tale. That we fuss and fight like everyone does. It would tell of a mother who loves-loves, loves, loves-the blessing of her family. It would ramble on about discipline, correction, and teaching-constant, consistent, never-ending teaching. That sometimes Mommy snaps and yells to gain attention, and moments later cries and hugs her babies and apologizes. It would speak of learning gentleness, patience, and long suffering. Every fiber would tell of each of us learning selflessness as we learn to submit to one another in love. As we share the same space with the same people all day long.

I would hope it would sing of the love the man of this house has for the homemaker here. How he sacrifices constantly, loves her through the tough times, and supports her when it's hard. How we've grown leaps and bounds in our spiritual relationship with each other and the Lord. And it would say we are more in love and dedicated now than we were 5 years ago when we first moved in to fresh carpet and paint.

It would echo the love, joy, and energy contained in 2 beautiful babies. Growing, active babies. It would tell of their worth, their achievements, their imaginations, their progress, their failures, their struggles. Oh and their love for one another--it is so immense!

But I would hope more than anything that the air of the entire house would say in unison that this place is filled with Jesus Christ. All the way from the ceilings to the floors. That his love echos from all the corners of this home. From the richness of quiet morning devotionals to the prayers uttered by a 3 year old at lunch time. To the nighttime Bible readings from Daddy told with enthusiasm and laughter. To the prayers offered to God to help us and forgive us as we struggle throughout the day. I hope it would sing of the verses we repeat on respect, truthfulness, discipline, gentleness, and kindness-all because we desire to be more like our Creator Himself. That we're growing, stretching, and learning all the time and growing so deep in our relationships with Him that it flows out of us to each other. That it would tell the vast improvement of respect and love shown between a husband a wife, the strides made in gentleness and patience and selflessness. And it would know we do not do these things to attain a higher level of "achievement," in ourselves, but simply because we are aiming toward Him with everything we've got. Our hearts yearn to please Him in all we do and say.

Oh if this house could speak. It would not say we are perfect. That we don't struggle. But it would definitely say that we are joyful. That we've made unforgettable memories. That my children are surrounded with unconditional love. And it would say that this house and the hearts within it, belong to the Lord, every nook and cranny. Oh, if this house could speak...

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