Christianity 201

July 3, 2012

Building Your House

Sally Breen did a series of four blog posts on the subject of Houses this past month.  To see all of them, click here.  The one we’ve selected for C201 readers is the fourth in the series, simply called Houses

She is looking very specifically and practically at houses that are ready to receive guests in the context of a radical, missional church-planting venture as practiced by the organization she is part of, 3DM.

But everyone reading this can consider the possibility of opening their home to people for the purpose of an informal Bible study group, or simply practicing Biblical hospitality. (You might even plant a church by accident!)

(And each of us needs to be constantly building the spiritual house for the Lord to dwell in; so you can also consider this on that level.)

Get ready. Company is coming!

Matthew 7 v 24 “therefore everyone who hears my words and puts them into practice is like a wise man who builds his house upon a rock ”

Our house, my house.

What is it built on ?

What are we putting in it? The scripture in Matthew indicates to me that we should be building our lives and houses on practical biblical principals that ensure that we can withstand the storms of life.

There are multiple references to houses and homes in the bible. Acts 2 v 46 “…They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts…”  and Acts 16 v 14-16 “…When she and the members of her household were baptized, she invited us to her home…” are just some.  Rodney Stark in his book ” the Triumph of Christianity.” writes that one of the key factors that enabled the early church to survive despite huge persecution was because of the “oikos ” or the household.

Households ( oikos ) have a vital and exciting part to play in discipleship and mission today. It is the place where we can both survive and thrive no matter what happens to our world.

But are our hearts ready for us to be able to use our homes in a new way?  What do we think are our rights to ” privacy” , ” independence “, and what selfish behaviors do we we rationalize by our personalities?  Do we justify what we don’t do by saying our house isn’t big enough or nice enough and say things like now is just not a good time, next year will be better?

Are the people who also live in your house ready ?  Are they ready to be welcoming ,selfless, make endless cups of coffee and loads of lasagna ?Are they ready to give thanks for all who come in. Are they ready to share their space and time? Are they ready to disciple?

Have we got our house ready practically?  Do you own enough mugs? Do you have a place everyone can shed their shoes and coats? Do you have enough chairs ? Do you have enough toilet rolls and are the spare ones easy to find. Do you have some children’s toys available even if your own children are now grown and at college ?

Do you have things in your home that if they were accidentally broken you would e be upset? Is there enough parking for more than one car outside?

Matthew 7 v 25.
The rain came down, the streams rose and the winds blew and beat against the house yet it did not fall because it has it’s foundation on the rock.

Sally Breen

Here’s a link to a review I did a year ago on a book on the house church movement, Small is Big by Felicity Dale.