One aspect of running a women’s Bookclub which fills my heart with gladness is the opportunity to intentionally cultivate and maintain at atmosphere of welcome, love, joy and peace within my home.
I’ve learnt over the years that anyone can create a beautiful display home style house… but unless we’ve welcomed the Holy Spirit into our homes with a heart to serve others, we can’t create the heavenly atmosphere we desire. The presence of Jesus cannot be faked.
We must sometimes stop and ask ourselves, are we creating a space to “host”; to show off the beautiful things we have? Or are we creating a welcoming, warm and beautiful “atmosphere” where the presence of Jesus can be experienced?
Knowing we are creating atmospheres and not display homes, frees us from the guilt or desire to perform and have “the perfect home”. Instead we spend time before our meetings praying, preparing a delicious snack or coffee, getting extra chairs out and even some tissues handy (instead of crazily running the mop over the floor!).
Our homes need only be neat enough, clean enough, cozy enough… Enough doesn’t mean perfect, it doesn’t mean you need to hide your laundry or the fact that you live there (why are we surprised when people’s houses look loved in?!). It’s not about “hosting” but fellowship.
Opening our homes need not be a scary thing, and when we intentionally cultivate that welcoming and life-giving atmosphere with the help of the Holy Spirit, we’ll have women sighing as they walk over the threshold – revelling in the peace and feeling at home themselves.
The women we welcome into our homes won’t remember the “things” we surrounded them with, but the atmosphere which surrounded them.
photo credit @thewillowsphotography
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