Friday, July 22, 2011

My Sanctuary, My Chorus

The other day I watched a short video, featuring a porch chat between Ann Voskamp and Renee Swope. The main focus of their visit was "framing God's gifts," or as Renee phrases it, "framing the moments and messes so we can see God in them and worship Him there." God is the artist, and we bring Him glory by focusing our attention on His masterpieces in our lives.

It was a great message, but I found that my heart was most drawn to a casual side comment made by Renee. The two laughed over the chaos of kids, the inevitable messes and mayhem. Renee brought a new light to this oh-so-familiar situation: "This is your sanctuary, and your children are your chorus."

Did you catch that? Let me repeat it:

This is your sanctuary, and your children are your chorus.

My home is my sanctuary. In this home we aim to embrace peace over strife, humility over pride and love over selfishness. Does it always happen? No. But because the Holy Spirit dwells among us, we are able to experience a love and a peace that the world cannot fabricate.

And how about my children? My messy, noisy, bickering offspring? They . . . are my chorus. Oh, dear. And what is my little quartet singing about? Well, it's not always harmonious, I can tell you that.

So it got me to thinking: How does a sanctuary embrace an unwieldy chorus? Because the bickering, even if it lessens, is a given. The selfishness, even when slightly tamed, is still a beast that rears its ugly head on a daily basis. How on earth do we make a joyful noise unto the Lord?

I don't have all the answers, but this is what I've been thinking about all weekend:

What if it's my reaction to the chaos that makes my home a sanctuary and my children a chorus?

A choir cannot harmonize if the director is wallowing in a selfish stupor. Nor will a joyful noise be made if the director is yelling and pointing fingers at the off-key sopranos. The most joyful noise will come from a chorus that loves its music. It will come from the people who cannot help but raise their voices in song because it's what they were made to do.

If contagious joy and worship are modeled by the director (yes, even in the messes and mayhem) then that little choir will be quick to catch on. And before you know it, a symphony of praise will swell from within those walls, bringing light and life to a home that has been miraculously transformed from a simple dwelling place into a holy sanctuary.
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