Holy in the Daily

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How a home becomes a thin place

Is Your Home a Thin Place?

I live in a typical American small town with my house located in what used to be a rural part of our community. This house is situated so that large picture windows overlook oak-covered hills off of our back deck, which is an extension of our living room.

Highway 101 is my immediate neighbor across the street. During the weeks of the popular California Mid State Fair, just up the highway from us, the traffic noise can last until 2:00 in the morning.

This seems an odd location for a girl raised on a ranch—on one side I view the hills and quiet meadows, and on the other side, I view a steady parade of big rigs, RVs, and lots of cars.

Obviously, I spend more time on the back deck than on the front porch. Yet, this is where God has placed me to live the life he has given me, and for that I am grateful.

This is the house where I have raised our six children, battled my private demons, and is the main spot of earth where God has shaped me. I can be fully human here—the good, bad, and ugly in me all meet here with the God who became human.

This house has become my “thin place”—a sacred place where heaven and earth connect.

How a house becomes a thin place

I think for a house to become such a place, a thin place, there has to the element of “real”—raw living that faces the struggles of life not with strength, but with the grace of God that teaches and molds us into his image—one living, eternal cell at a time.

Maybe becoming a thin place includes living in one location long enough to have the “real” permeate the foundations, walls, and rafters of the house. I’m not sure about that, but I wonder. Anyway, I’m glad the walls can’t talk.

There have been many times in the past when I have wanted to move away—leave the bad memories along with the good—if it would help take the pain away. But pain signals the need for healing and bad memories can become landmarks of the work of God in my life if I’m willing to go through the pain rather than escape it.

This house has seen a lot of laughter, but a lot of pain and healing too. The laughter overshadows the pain and leaves a residue of joy.

Is your home a thin place? Has the element of “real” carried you through the painful times to where heaven and earth connect?

Does your house contain the decorations of the Spirit obtained through time and struggle?

Has your house become a home—a habitation for the God who became human?

In Him together, Susan Gaddis

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This Post Has 6 Comments

  1. susan. i love this. home being a holy place. we have moved and moved and moved because of school over our 11 years of marriage (11 years!) and have never owned a home…but still, where my babies play at my feet while i pick up my bible and devotional…where the sunlight streams in while i sip coffee…where the same pictures hang on my wall from house to house…it is my “thin” place too…thanks for the words to savor this sunny summer morning…

  2. Susan Gaddis

    Thanks, Sara. I appreciate how you tied in your experiece of moving from house to house, and yet your babies, daily routine, and favorite pictures make your home a thin place for you. I could just imagine you sitting with your coffee and watching the kids play. 🙂

  3. Lora Dawes

    Such truth and wisdom Susan! I missed this 4 years ago but am glad I stumbled across it today.

    I too am glad that walls can’t talk. We have been in our current home for 20 years now and have experienced the hand of God in many different ways there. Many years ago Dick Mills gave us multiple Scriptures at a Full Gospel Businessmen’s meeting…I just pulled them out and reread them last Sunday.Most of those promises had to do with Gods blessing in & over our home. I am always amazed by how He keeps and fulfills His word. Thank you again for your faithfulness in bringing forth the Lord’s heart and helping us understand the many facets of it.

    1. Susan Gaddis

      You’re welcome, Lora.

      So thankful you found encouragement in this post.

      And what a treasure you have in saving those “words” from years ago that Dick Mills gave you. What an addition to your spiritual legacy library to leave for your kids to read through one day. 🙂

      Susan

  4. Donna Robb

    Susan,

    I found your blog today as I was searching for scriptural blessings for a home after it has been robbed. November 6, 2017 thieves broke in my back door with only a kick or two. Most of the things stolen were sentimental in nature, things from my late husband and late Daddy. Also my largest lost my MacBook Pro with thumb drives I had used for backup as my backup drive didn’t work properly with iCloud. That backup drive didn’t get stolen. But I had thousands of family photos and a book project that is a calling from God. So I was devastated.

    My home has always been a noticeably peaceful place. Even before I gave my life to Christ in 2004. My best friend asked if the prior owner was a praying woman, but I didn’t know. But that would account for it.

    Since the burglary, I have been taking steps to better secure my home according to what the police told me actually works and things I have found online. The other day my new iMac arrived along with a device to lock it down to be more secure. Last time they didn’t steal anything bulky or heavy which is why I bought a 27” iMac as it is both. The Police Officer said that if they want to break in bad enough nothing will stop them, but the more layers of security makes it not such an attractive target. Since the robbery, my peace has been shattered.

    The day before the robbery I was working on my MacBook and getting quite frustrated with it as it was getting older and slow and starting to be glitchy. I thought I need a new computer.

    As I set up my new Mac, it had a section to transfer items from my old computer. So thinking that I seemed to remember copying and pasting items from my MacBook Pro to the backup drive, I attached it. All my stuff as of October 1,2017 was there! When I thought about it later, I realized while this was a trial, God used it to bless me. As with the Insurance money I only had to pay about $600 or so towards my new computer that would have cost $3,150 without. (I try to get the latest, greatest and fastest machines so they last longer. My last was five years old.)

    I noticed when the computer was in the house, my home felt complete. Like a puzzle when you place the last piece.

    The fear God helped me with but was still hanging in the until last Sunday night at Church when my retired pastor prayed for me. I felt the fear leave, all at once. Then a few days later, anxiety took its place, so at a prayer meeting Friday I just caught the tail end of after work was late, I asked them to pray. I also asked that nothing else take its place. Since I had just been at a trade show standing and walking for nearly four hours after working since 9 am, they also prayed for my burning feet. Again, God answered prayer! Immediately like the gracious God He is.

    The Pastor who prayed for me a week ago, gave his son a brief Bible study to give me as he hated that the peace in my home was gone. It has helped, but last night there were gun shots again. Nearer my home than before. We have been getting gun shots about once a week lately. I refuse to live in fear. But I don’t want to get shot while sitting in my home.

    One of my two cats is finally getting back to being just a cat and not feel like she has to watch the back door almost constantly.

    While I have lived here for many years in three different times, I finally became the owner of my home in August, free and clear. I love my home but am starting to feel I should move to a small town with lower to non existent crime rate and rent this house out. I am paying off debt and don’t want to get in over my head as right now I’m paying about what I would for a mortgage to get things paid off. I could use rent to pay my new house payments, but then couldn’t save it for a prudent reserve for repairs, taxes and insurance.

    So what I would like to know from you is, do you have any Biblical promises that I can stand on and pray with over not just my home, but my neighborhood also?

    Pastor gave me Proverbs 3:33 and 24:15-16. But I really would like more that I can write nicely and place about my home as I pray them.

    I have seen the Lord do many miracles in my life. I don’t want to be in debt. I am only one mile from my failing mother here. Also only a 6-7 minute drive to work. These would increase to about 24 minutes from a home I am looking at online. Which makes it inconvenient for Church. friends and family also.

    My parents wanted me to have this home so I would always have a place to live, no matter what. I have learned the hard way to listen to the wisdom of my parents and God.

    Please help me find a prayer strategy and scripture to pray and claim in this situation.

    Thank you,

    Donna

    1. Susan Gaddis

      Wow, Donna. It sounds like you have really been through a lot!

      Here are a few links with Scriptures and strategies you can use and pray concerning your home and keeping it safe:

      Here’s the link to a list of God’s Promises to pray for your home:
      https://susangaddis.net/2013/03/list-of-gods-promises/

      Here’s a link to spiritually decorate your home for the holidays. The principles there will obviously work year round to make your home a place of peace and safety:
      https://susangaddis.net/2013/12/decorate-your-home-for-christmas/

      This post gives more insight into making your home a place of godly heritage and full of peace and safety:
      https://susangaddis.net/2011/12/decorate-with-a-godly-heritage/

      And, finally, I’m not sure if you’ll find this last one helpful, but I thought I’d include it as it contains some tips you can incorporate into your strategy for a safe home and neighborhood:
      https://susangaddis.net/2014/06/take-action-resident-evil/

      You’re on my prayer list as I know how vulnerable you must feel.

      Hugs,
      Susan

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