Making your home a haven...the way to love

Hi ladies!

Today I have a challenge for you.  It is actually a challenge that I want you to do for the remainder of the month.  If you're like me, you're already striving for this... however, if you are like me, at times this very important challenge may fall by the way-side.

Women.  I believe we set the atmosphere for our home.  What about you, do you believe that?

I've taken notes... done sort of a test and what I've concluded is that often times my countenance will either uplift my family or bring them down.

This challenge is not original either.  I got the idea to link up with Courtney over at Women Living Well.  I saw where she talked about humming while doing the dishes and I thought to myself, "I need to share with the ladies how I love washing dishes by candlelight while drinking San Pellegrino and listening to classical music"  Hey, I like it :-)

Or how I love to be the only one up early morning with candles lit and inhaling their scents, along with the scents from my warm and fuzzy towel and clothes as I fold.

Sometimes I even cook by candle light.  The kids sure do love it.  They come in sometimes and talk, asking, "Why I do it?"

"It calms me.  Relaxes me. It's my thang"  I tell them.

Today I ask you to purpose in your heart along with me and a few other women to make your home a haven.

Read how Joy, the proud Mama of five, makes her home a haven, but first here's a bit of info about her:  

Joy is the wife to a missionary pilot and they, along with their five kids, live in Indonesia.  Joy is a proud wife, blessed mommy, runner, homeschooler, reader, thinker, home-maker, lover of nature, and most of all, an undeserving recipient of amazing grace, and grateful daughter of God.  Joy’s heart is to encourage women to revel in their job as mommy and wife, and to see it as good and needed work.  She blogs at Grace Full MamaJoy writes:
You might think that missionaries don’t struggle with wanting material things or perhaps that we are “above” wanting things to look nice.
 Not so. I, just like the next girl, like pretty things.  As a child, I dreamed of a little farmhouse with a cute picket fence beckoning you to come to the porch and sit a while.
Fast forward to life in a tropical city.  My idea of a dream house never included gecko poop on the walls or pythons in the backyard.   I never dreamed of the mold in the corner of every cabinet, ants marching in at every stray crumb left on the counter, or my couches that are meant to be “outside” couches but, alas, are in my living room.
 And I struggled (still do at times). And, I would sigh, and dream of a walk down Target aisles.  A trip to the craft store.  And wish that my life looked different.Over several months God began teaching me contentment.  He brought this verse to me, the words of Paul,

 “… for I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am.” Philippians 4:11
To finish reading Joy's story you can go here, Women Living Well.

Also if you would like to participate in making your home a haven I've put the schedule below.  Each week we tackle one specific task.

Send me your stories, I'd love to hear from you and what you're doing to make your home a haven.  If you have a blog... go ahead and write about it and send me the link so that I can post it here and send a note to Courtney on how her ministry is encouraging us!

Thanks ladies!

Making your house a home haven schedule

October 3 - Go buy an extra large candle and light a candle everyday in your home. I will be starting mine in the morning! But you can start yours at dinner time. Do what makes sense for your family. I will be placing mine in the kitchen – the main hub of my home. Each time the candle catches your eye, say a prayer for peace in your home.

October 10 – Play soft music everyday in your home. Choose worship, classical or another form of peaceful music that the family enjoys. Focus on using peaceful words and maintaining peaceful relationships. Remind your family to avoid seething anger, tattling, criticism or back talk. As the wife/mother, work on gentleness this week.

October 17 – List a few of the spots in your home that make you visually stressed because of all the clutter.Now go buy something for that spot – like a basket to put it all in! Work on cleaning up clutter – throw things away and encourage the children and your hubby to do the same in their bedrooms or offices or work areas this week. While you’re at it – clean up some clutter in your spiritual life. What gets in the way of your peace spiritually?
October 24 -Keep the candle going, the music playing, and add some tender moments with your family. Have a pillow party in the family room and get out every blanket and pillow in the house and be cozy with the kids or your hubby! Even if you live alone you can do this. Enjoy a cozy evening of hot cider and caramel corn. Give a 5 minute back rub to every single person in your house…and for a double challenge- try to give one every day to each family member! During your tender moment with the family, ask them how they feel about this challenge. Are they enjoying it? Is it helpful? Is there anything they would change. 
October 31 – Focus on the kitchen, the heart of the home.  Cook things with pleasant aromas. Pick a meal the family can cook together – include everyone in a task and take pictures so everyone can remember moments in the kitchen together – test tasting, being creative, laughing and loving. Remove discontentment with your home or family and give thanks to God for the home God has given you to in which to create a haven for your family. 
Jesus said in John 14:27 “Peace I leave with you, my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled.”
I have been lighting my candle all winter, spring and summer long.  It’s my daily habit to light my kitchen candle and then say a prayer for peace in our home.  Join me today – light a candle in your kitchen and say a prayer for your family.
To read more about making your home a haven, visit Women Living Well.
Side note for a moment.  I don't know how it is for all of you, but I fail at this sometimes.  Though it is always my hearts desire to make my home a haven, I allow how I am feeling about a particular situation get in my way and I will cease the heart smile.

My goal—to continue and not give up. Continue to allow my heart to smile regardless of what season I am in :-)

xxoo, Angela

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Post linked to About A Mom

Image sources:
House of Grace
Grace Full Mama


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