Pinterest, HGTV, and lifestyle blogs all contribute fabulous ideas of how to reorganize or renovate your home (be it an apartment, dorm room, or house) into the space you dream of. Now I like Pinterest and a smattering of lifestyle blogs as much as the next person but—by golly—those ideas usually require a hefty investment of time or cash. So what do you do when your Pinterest boards are overflowing and you’re ready to freshen up and change your living space but your time and money are already budgeted? You start small.
Begin with what you have and take care of it. While you’re saving for that piece of furniture or waiting for weekends to work on your DIY projects, work with what you have and keep everything clean and tidy.
How does cleaning and tidying get you the house you dream of? Well, it doesn’t by itself. Cleaning is the stepping stone between what you have and what you want. When the desire to nest sets in, there is a pull to do things immediately, to get your dream space now. But when your schedule is full and you’re waiting for that sale, it’s easy to leave tasks and projects unfinished. Those unfinished household tasks clutter your home and make everything feel even more unfinished. So what? Who cares if your home is messy while you spruce things up?
You should care. Keeping a clean home is a way of honoring the Lord and serving others. Here are two ways you can do this.
Your home is your retreat. Your clean home is your sanctuary from the trials and perils of the world. Your clean home is a place of beauty and rest where you can privately commune with Jesus.
Your home is another’s refuge. Your clean home is a sanctuary of welcome and respite for others. Your clean home is a place of beauty and rest where others can meet Jesus.
Our doors should always be open to those in need. The need might be a cup of coffee or an extended stay. Keeping up with daily chores is a way of being ready to minister to others. It is a way of wearing the readiness of the gospel of peace.
The desire to reschedule or postpone is strong when our homes are messy. Think about who you might be turning away. Think about the opportunities that might be lost because your mess was a mess when it didn’t need to be.
It might not be feasible to have the latest furnishings or decorations, but keep whatever you have clean and ready for others as service to the Lord. Anyone’s keeping of a home is no less work for the Lord than going to the office is. God gives us the work of our hands; putting our hands diligently to all the work he gives will bring him honor and glory.
Decorating, reorganizing, or renovating take time. Last year I wrote about Muse Emporium and the way I watched its slow improvement from the outside. The store went from drab to lovely over several months. The changes were small and the process was slow. The end result was beautiful and worth the wait.
Don’t give up the dreams of what you want your home to be. Make your home inviting by taking care of what you have, while planning for what you dream, and do it all as service to the Lord.