Walking along a city street, I pass by houses of all types of contrasting architectures. Beautiful mansions. Humble shacks. Sweet cottages. Different shapes. Different sizes. Different appeals.
I decide to peek in some of the windows to see how the people live there. Some sit quietly by their hearths, their peaceful faces lit by the fire’s glow. The sound of fighting prevails in other residences; some families reconcile before bed and kneel together in prayer.
Joy and thankfulness fill some homes, while sadness or grief fills others. Love permeates many households, yet hate and unforgiveness abound in some.
As I move on, I see habitats in different stages of completion. Some sit abandoned. Basement foundations protrude out of the ground. Yards have building supplies of lumber, nails, and bricks laying in piles.
As I peek in more windows, I see that some dwellings stand vacant, yet occupied with all sorts of critters. Some homes are exceptionally clean while others are littered with trash. Some are clean but empty. Others appear weather-beaten and neglected.
In some homes, family members lie on sick beds, frightened. Others stand around the death bed of a loved one, in tears, yet rejoicing as that one is about to depart for heaven.
So puzzled, I ask the Lord, “What does all this mean?”
“My child,” He whispers in that gentle yet powerful inner voice, “these homes represent the hearts of My children, no matter whether they are elegant mansions or humble shacks. My children’s hearts come in all shapes, all sizes, all appeals.
“Many hearts are filled with bitterness and quarreling; some obey My Word to not let the sun go down while they are still angry.
“Many heart-homes contain sadness or grief, longing to be comforted. Some receive My comfort because they seek it; others struggle along without Me.
“Each heart lingers in some stage of completion. Some merely lay a foundation of salvation, forgetting to build on it. While others, distracted through difficult trials or busy schedules, have never built on that foundation and lack all I offer to help them get through their day. Still others abandon their foundation altogether.
“Some hearts build haphazardly on their foundation, resulting in a faulty edifice. The winds of heartache or misfortune blow upon it and the walls collapse.
“Some have allowed Me to sweep their heart-homes clean; some remain clean but empty and cold, refusing My love. While others refuse My cleansing and remain unkempt, allowing trash and irritants to move in.
“There are frightened hearts, and bodies that lie on sick beds. Death stares them in the face, but heaven would be their eternal destination if they only asked Me.
“Love, hate, unforgiveness, joy, thankfulness…so many things can fill a heart-home.
“I offer so many supplies with which a child of Mine may use to build on that foundation. I love it when My commands and My Word are laid in place with the cement of obedience, but it breaks My heart when they are left lying on the ground.
“The most precious to My heart are the heart-homes that sit in peace by the hearth, aglow with the warmth of My love, despite the storms raging outside.
“I want to continually add to each foundation, to enlarge each heart-home, as Jabez prayed, ‘Oh, that You would bless me and enlarge my border, and that Your hand might be with me, and You would keep me from evil so it might not hurt me!’ (1 Chron. 4:10 Amp)
“I would enlarge those precious hearts that seek Me and desire My presence, as Ezekiel said, ‘and the rooms became broader as they encompassed the temple higher and higher, for the encircling of the house went higher and higher round about the temple.’” (Ezek. 41:7a Amp)
Oh, that I would use the cement of obedience to build a heart-home for my Lord that would be most precious to Him, that is aglow with His love and expands as it encompasses Him more and more.
What kind of heart-home are you building for your Lord?