Tuesday, June 18, 2013

The Identity of Home

My husband and I embarked on shopping for our first home purchase together earlier this year.  I have often been forewarned about how stressful the process is.  And being first-time home buyers, it was even more daunting. 

In the beginning, there was a lot of learning taking place.  The market is pretty aggressive, we didn't know that much about escrows, mortgages, or offers.  We also didn't really know what we were looking for in a house, what we liked and dislike about the structure itself.  Not to mention it was hard to look past the current occupant's decorating and really see the house for its true potential.

Something I discovered was how strong of a word home is to me.  You know how the word love is indefinable to poets?  The word home is very similar for me.  It has such a profound connotation, so much wealth of history.  I grew up in a home that I adored, loved and found security in.  To search for another structure to provide that same thing for my future family is both exciting and nerve-wracking.  I feel like I'm choosing my college all over again.

The character of the home I grew up in has made a profound impact on the shaping of my personhood.  I think that is pretty much the case for everyone.  The nurture in the nature vs. nurture argument.  Intellectually, I knew that already.  But I didn't understand it.

It was like a light bulb turned on, and I felt stupid that it took me so long to realize it: home is a huge deal to me.

I was talking about "non-negotiables" in my life with some girls the other day.  We were talking about how we have non-negotiables in our schedule, things that don't budge for anything else.  Family, church, school, and work are usually things that make it into that list.

Home is like a non-negotiable.  Not only is a foundation to my character, but it is a rock that does not get moved.  It is a cornerstone to the structure that is Cheryl.

Home is a family.  It has a certain look and feel.  It is where you do chores, wash dishes, be good stewards of a structure and a piece of land.  It is where love is fought for and worked on.  It is a place to invite people in, to share and to laugh.  It is a source of both assuring peace and unsettling stress.  It is where you know you can always come back to, no matter what.

And that is where I've come, and there is an identity that I hope to create in my future family.  I hope that the home my husband and I create, something unique to us, is a irrevocable foundation to my children's characters as much as it has been to my own.

Soli Deo Gloria.