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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: The Family Home (05/29/08)

TITLE: House Guests
By Scarlett Farr


There is a saying I remember from my teenage years, ďWhen you canít go anywhere else, you can always go homeĒ. At the time I thought it meant that after I exhausted my list of fun and exciting places, such as my best friendís house or the mall, then I would head back to my boring house. Now that I am grown and have a home of my own, I canít think of any other place I want to be. In my home I feel safe and comfortable. Home is the one place where I can block out all the unpleasantness of the outside world. Itís where I can climb into my warm familiar bed for restful sleep or put my feet on the coffee table and do nothing at all. Itís the one place where I can snuggle my husband, daughter and dog to my heartís content. Everything I have come to treasure is in my home.

As a Christian thereís another treasure in my home that I far too often forget about. In John 14:23, Jesus tells us, ďif anyone loves me, he will obey my teaching. My Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him (NIV). What an awesome but intimidating thought is that? Not only is my ever-faithful dog waiting for me at home, but sheís waiting alongside my God and my Jesus. They are waiting to talk with me, comfort me, strengthen me and be a part of my life.

Like any good southern woman, knowing I have house guests causes me to wonder if I have been hospitable enough. No, I donít mean making sure the dust-bunnies are out of sight and that there is plenty of sweet tea and a tasty dessert in the refrigerator (although, those are very important). What gives me pause is wondering if I have shown the most important house guests I will ever have the hospitality They deserve? Ironically, I have to stop and ask myself, is my familyís home the first place They want to be, or as if a mirror image of my teenage self, would They prefer to be somewhere, anywhere, more inviting than my home?

Do they avert Their eyes and nervously shuffle Their feet when I speak gruffly to my husband and daughter because Iím in a constant rush when I get home from work? Would my house guests be embarrassed by the televisions programs we watch? Are they disappointed that meals I prepare for my family do not honor the bodies They gave us?

Most importantly, do I treat Them as I do other house guests, or do I send Them off into the sunroom to wait for me to find a free moment for Them. Do I hurriedly relay the dayís events just before bedtime, nodding off before They have a chance to tell me what They have been sitting with the dog, patiently waiting to tell me all day long?

I am confident that I havenít been the best hostess I can be. In fact, Iím pretty sure my dog has been the better hostess. And I am very sure that if I had been treated the way my house guests have been treated, I wouldnít return, no matter how tasty the sweet tea may be. Fortunately, my houseguests havenít left yet and today when I push the button on the garage door opener, I will remember to put on my best southern smile, open the back door, pat the dog on the head and greet my houseguests with all the hospitality They deserve and desire.

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This article has been read 1304 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Sara Harricharan 06/05/08
This has a devotional slant to it, very encouraging with an honest voice and realistic bits of life inside. Well done. ^_^
Chely Roach06/06/08
Wonderful and convicting message here...well done.
jodie banner06/06/08
What a convicting, honest, entry. I may print this and hang it up in my kitchen. Great take on the topic!
Holly Westefeld06/07/08
Welcome. This is a reminder we all need. You did a nice job of tying it together with the dog and sweet tea connection throughout.
Catrina Bradley 06/07/08
This essay has a very comfortable, engaging voice. Flows great and reads well. It's also very convicting - my eyes started stinging with tears at the thought of how I've treated my own Houseguests. I love the concept - and the original take on the topic. Wonderful! And, welcome, friend!
Jan Ackerson 06/09/08
Welcome to FaithWriters!

I really like your 3rd paragraph especially.
Debbie Wistrom06/09/08
Ouch! This stung. You did a great job getting your message across without being preachy. I need to watch myself in this area for sure, thanks for the reminder.
Joanne Sher 06/09/08
VERY convicting - a lot of people need to read this (and I am chief among them!) and I hope they do - and live it out. Thank you.
Norma-Anne Hough06/10/08
Brilliant message for us all in this. Makes me wonder how I rate. I enjoyed reading it and wish you well. Looking forward to reading more of your stuff.
Love Norms
julie clark08/25/08
really good artical it does make you think and its one i struggle with daily in several areas