Thursday, June 13, 2024

Leaving the Sanctuary of Home

Outdoor swing at Mrs. White's House.

If one is to be the light of the world, there must be a sense of joy and peace coming from the heart and mind.  We have the ability to create a haven in our homes. This is where we feel safe and at rest. Home is where one finds compassion, mercy, and forgiveness. It is the place where we serve one another in love.  But what happens when we leave this sanctuary?

We need to put on the whole armour of God. I did not fully understand this until recently. It took on a whole new meaning for me this past week.  Sometimes we will sense a strange mood come over us while we are in stores. We may have to interact with employees or salesmen who want a commission with no regard for the needs of the customer.  We may notice their professionalism but not understand our lack of peace. While walking through a store we may even feel a sudden feeling of depression come over us for no apparent reason.  It makes one want to conduct business as quickly as possible and get out of there. 

 We must stay alert.  But more than this, we have to build up our spiritual strength before we leave home.  Putting on the armour of God (from Ephesians 6) is a way to keep our light bright and our joy strong.  We are strangers and pilgrims upon this earth.  We are to be set-apart.  I recently noticed a family of Mennonites in the supermarket.  There was a mother and father and their young children. They looked peaceful and happy as they went about their shopping.  The difference in their mannerism and modest way of dressing was in stark contrast to other shoppers. It was like seeing a way of life from the old days as it clashed with the modern world.  I also see elderly grandmothers who are cheerful and smiling as they fill up their carts.  They are patient and kind. They are from a time, generations ago, when people were genuinely caring and considerate of others. When we encounter such people, as we go through life, it is as if we are seeing lights of goodness, brightening other lights around them. 

To put on the armour of God means we have to meditate on Scripture, stay in the habit of regular prayer, sing hymns, and lean on the Lord with great trust and faith. This will brighten our lights and help us as we go about our mission work for the home. 

When we are away, on necessary trips, it is important to keep one's guard up.  We must not be easily deceived.  We are journeying on a path towards our eternal rest. The road is hard and the travel is exhausting. Years ago, I read about how Corrie ten Boom traveled as she shared her testimony and faith.  In one location, she felt overwhelmed with a darkness and depression she could not shake.  She later realized it was the culture around her and the lack of godliness in the people.  These days, I believe we can easily forget that we are dealing with such things that can bring on sudden feelings of depression into our minds.  The way to counteract this is to seek the Lord and to stay alert.  We have the promises of God and so much for which to be grateful.  We are the children of the precious Lord! We have a heritage! We have a source of peace, protection, and rest.

For the past several weeks, I have been going on many medical trips with one of my sons. After one of these trips, my husband asked me how I was doing. He knows how tired I am. Then he asked, "How are you doing spiritually?"  I was so grateful and comforted by his words. Then he recited a Psalm and prayed with me.

Each day, whenever I am away, I read from my little travel Bible. I have a passage marked which greatly comforts me when I am not at home. It is from John 14:27, and says, "Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid."

We must not get discouraged on this road of life.  Keep home a little sanctuary for the family. Make it a place they will always want to come home to.  This is where we can build up our spiritual strength as we go about our days serving the Lord with joy.


Mrs. White

From the Archives -

Essential - The Privacy of Home Life.

Finances - Retirement Planning for the Poor.

It is okay to be - Just a Housewife.

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Patty B said...

Your post is so well said! There is indeed an evil out there. I am reminded of 1 Peter 5:8 about how the devil is like a roaring lion, seeking whom he shall devour. When I am out 'in the world' doing shopping or whatever I often encounter rudeness, foul language and immodest dress. This serves to remind me that Christians are to be separate from all this. It is always good to be back home! We have an Amish community not too far from where I live and they have a store I often shop at. It is their store, but they welcome non-Amish also. How different this place is from the big box store in the city. Instead of piped in loud music, the Amish girls who stock the shelves sing hymns softly, and the owner has a clock that plays a hymn at the top of the hour. It is a peaceful place.

Martha Jane Orlando said...

I sense things like that, too, Mrs. White. When we know Jesus and His goodness and light that are within us, we see the world and its pitfalls much more clearly. Let's always put on the full armor of God.

Mrs. K. Hagema said...

Yes to all of this! Over the years, I have, to the best of my ability, oriented my shopping to only places that are quiet and kind. But of course, to keep within budget, there is a trip to big box about 4 times a year for a canned goods restock. Oh, the heartache and sadness on our current culture. It would be unbearable if not for fixing my mind on Jesus and what He would want of me. I make sure to keep a pleasant face, be helpful when needed and pray for everyone I whose path I cross. People are hurting so badly, lonely, ill. Like Patty, I do most of my shopping in Mennonite and Amish stores, which we have many of. Also, quiet local thrift stores if I should need housewares. Most of our life is “out of the world”, which is where I am comfortable, but I cannot avoid the world always. So as you said, we gear up the “armor” and try to be positive and show Jesus to the best of my ability.

Melissa said...

I have written on a small chalk board in my kitchen, "Home is the nicest word there is". Supposedly Laura Ingalls Wilder said that, but even if she didn't, it's true for me. When I come home after a crazy trip to town or if we happen to travel somewhere, I always feel a wash of peace come over me. The world is just our temporary home and for that I'm so thankful.

Amelia said...

Oh Mrs. White....Amen, amen and amen. Yes, I so understand and agree with every single word here. I'm very in tune to the spiritual tone around me as well.

The Word of the Lord and our prayer time, talking to the Father at all times is such a protection. It is like having little police over our thoughts, heart and soul.

Oh what a Light this entry is, beautiful fellowship. It always is, but this one really hit some heartstrings.

May we truly keep our homes as insulated and loving sanctuaries where the Peace of God reigns.

How sweet to hear of your wonderful husband reading the psalm and praying with you, just wonderful. : )

Love and care, ~Amelia

Debbie said...

Hi Mrs. White :) This is so timely! I just read Ephesians this morning and was reminded of the Armor of God. You are so right about staying in a mindset of discernment at all times. It reminded me of a family trip we took one year to Orlando. From the time we entered the city, we felt an oppression that was spiritual. There were certain groups of people visiting the city that June and the city was full of darkness. The day we pulled away from that city, it was as if a huge cloud of darkness lifted off of us, the farther down the highway we went.
Needless to say, we've never been back.

Thanks for this very important reminder to be alert at all times, as scripture says.

Have a wonderful weekend!

Elizabethd said...

Mrs White, I so agree with everything you have said. We have to be in this world but not of it. Good manners of the 'old days' seem to have disappeared completely here in England, apart from mainly the older generation. So very sad to see young people doing exactly what they wish with no thought for others.
You must find the travelling very tiring. How lovely that your husband is so concerned about you.

Lady Locust said...

What a great reminder. He is our protector. I read something recently that when we feel like we are not in the right place, remember we can be a light to others so maybe we are there to share His light with someone else even if we don't realize it :-) Home is definitely my sanctuary so I too struggle with this.

Billie Jo said...

Hello, Mrs. White. Thank you for this. I thought I was the only one who felt this way when leaving her home. I get that same sense in my heart at certain stores or places. I always feel so relieved when I am home, safe and sound. I will remember your words each time I go now!

Genie said...

Today, as I took my college-age daughter to her eye appointment, I had to slam on my brakes twice because people pulled right out in front of me as if I were not even there. We had to drive from the doctor’s office to the eyewear store and I felt that sad, wretched feeling there. Sitting in a chair was a young woman with green hair, completely covered in tattoos of skulls, snakes, and what looked like demon faces. She looked so dark and so sad. There we were in our skirts and combed hair. I did wonder what she thought of us. I hope our light was shining, but I probably had the look of shock on my face. I just got home and sat down for a snack and your blog to cheer me up. Going out in the world wipes me out. I can play tennis for 2 or 3 hours, but dealing with today’s public wears me out instantly. I’m glad you shared your feelings. It reminded me of the evil forces that cannot be seen and for me to listen to the Holy Spirit when I’m out there. I will try to shine a little brighter next time that terrible feeling comes. God bless you while you travel “out in the world.”