Saturday, December 12, 2009

"And then many will be offended, will betray one another, and will hate one another...... the love of many will grow cold." Matthew 24:10,12

Probably every week (every day?) most of us are given opportunities to become offended.

Last week I had a memorable opportunity.

See, our local phone company replaced some phone wires on our street and they forgot to hook our neighbors' phone back up. The following day 'Linda' walked over here to ask if we still had phone service, and if so, could she call the phone company.

Now, often this neighbor had visited with us out in our yard, but she'd never before stepped inside our house. The three of us spoke in our kitchen for awhile, mostly about our Magic Jack phone which, fortunately, decided to work much, much better three months ago, right before I was about to throw it out the window. heh.

So after she made her phone call in our dining room (while I straightened the kitchen a bit), she asked for more details about Magic Jack and our super-cheap tv cable, taking notes, even. She was here probably a half-hour, we told her to come again if the phone company didn't show up the following day, and then she left.

Now, why should I be tempted to become offended about any of that? Well, in all that time, she said not one word about our house. You know, this place where I've, at times, poured out my soul up on a ladder, painting walls. This place where I've rearranged furniture, hung wallpaper and curtains, and tried to make everything golden and warm and comfortable.

She said nothing about any of that. Not a word.


But you know? I just told that snarky temptation to become offended/sad/insecure/discouraged to take a hike. And instead, I asked God to always (always!) nudge me, (even tip me over if He must), to say something nice about peoples' homes, no matter why I happen to be there. I do usually try to pick out things I like and comment about them, but now, oh my, may God help me to become more passionate about letting people know the work they've done on their homes is noticed, appreciated and valued.

Myself, I believe that's a much better way to use the energy it would have required to remain all offended and bummed-out. Always, there's more value in learning from others what not to do, rather than sitting around in a huff, resenting their mistakes. Always.


Sara said...

how wonderfully you've allowed your disappointment to be recreated into an opportunity to bless others. and before i "go"; may i say you have a beautiful home! i'm here all the time to take the debra's home tour!

~Blessings, Karen said...

Oh that ole' snarky temptation tries to latch on me as well at times. I just hate that feeling!!!

The Holy spirit always convicting me, I'm not here to please others but only God. Then I get comfort knowing that and I will be greatly rewarded!!!

You do have a lovely home...want to turn it in a bed-n-breakfast home? I'll be the first one in line :)

Judy said...

Some people just don't care. I don't understand why, but they just don't care.

I don't GET that.

And, your house is PERFECT.

Anonymous said...

Oh Debra, I love your house. Yes, you turned that into a teaching post. This might be one of my favorites, but then I say that every day. Joyce in Texas.

Pearl said...

Your home is warm and inviting and isn't that what we all want. I'm the same way Debra I always tell people what a lovely home they have, even if it's not always clean or what have you. It's the polite thing to do. But when it comes to your own home you and your spouse are the only ones that have to like it! Even if the husband has no decorating sense?0:
I like to ask you girls "how does this look?" Because its like having any other girl friend or Mom, helping you out on where to hang a picture etc. Have fun with your house! Warm regards, Pearl

Donetta said...

It like the old pointing at somebody to only have three more pointing back at us.
buy the way I love that glow in the dining room:)

Vicki/Jake said...

Some things (people) are not worth your time...this is one of them...

Queen of France said...

It could be that her mind was absorbed with the worry of the phone and maybe she didn't even notice the surroundings. Hopefully at some point she'll mention how lovely your home is...could be she's a late bloomer with compliments.

Let's hope so...and i'm glad you worked through that - i know we women are tied with ego and our home - at least i am!!!!! *understatement of the year*

Have a great day in the home you and your Husband enjoy!

Happy Monday!

Nan said...

Amazing to me (and probably to you, too, Debra), there are people who DO NOT NOTICE houses. They just don't see 'things' the way I do. I think you and I and other home lovers really see everything - that little vase over in the corner, the kind of flour the person buys, the color on the walls. It happens in movies, too. I'll pause the dvd and say, 'look at that table or mixer or countertop' and Tom hasn't even seen it.:<)

Beth said...

I agree with Nan. Truthfully, I don't always notice the surroundings, I'm more in tune with the people. I am a home health nurse so I am in all sorts of homes. My focus is really more on the people in that home.

That said, it sounds like your neighbor was worried about her situation. And interested in making conversation with you.

I love visiting your blog and watching how you've transformed your ffarmhouse. And your sweet attitude that points towards the Lord is especially refreshing. Thanks for sharing.

Yellowhouse Grandma said...

a home is for free expression, not good impressions.. (but we still enjoy sharing our homes!) I've read that phrase somewhere in the past and it came to mind after reading your post. I LOVE your house however. I was so excited when I FOUND your blog once again and LOVED looking at your new house pictures and saw so many things I love! Keep up the good work.

ER said...

Hi there,

Your post interested me because I'm one of those people who never ever say anything about a person's home. I do not like it when people come into my home and start looking around. I feel like they are being nosy. And I make it a point not to be nosy when I'm in another's home.

To me the home is a sanctuary. I want to live in my home without worrying about what a visitor will think of it or if they'll go through my medicine cabinet or personal things. (One relative has a very bad habit of picking up letters and reading them.)
I'm just a very private person.

So please know that it probably was nothing to do with you or your home, but maybe that your neighbor was just being considerate in another way.