16 March 2009

Lenten Devotions: A Lovely Dwelling Place

How lovely is your dwelling place, 
O LORD of hosts!
My soul longs, indeed it faints
for the courts of the LORD;
my heart and my flesh sing for joy 
to the living God.

Even the sparrow finds a home
and the swallow a nest for herself,
where she may lay her young,
at your altars, O LORD of hosts,
my King and my God.
Happy are those who live in your house, 
ever singing your praise.
Psalm 84.1-4

I meant to write this early this afternoon, after Kristin arrived home and the girls went down for their naps.  But a nagging fear intervened.  We have noticed some ugly condensation below one of our soffit vents this winter, and I was getting worried about what might be causing it.  So, off came the vent and up I went into the attic, where I found something very similar to what you see in the picture above:  our bathroom exhaust fan venting directly into the attic, not to an exterior vent.  

I'm a fairly handy guy.  We knew there would be some issues with our home when we bought it.  But this particular project turned into far more than I thought it would.  I stopped work around 9:00, with some final exterior work and a bit of cleanup yet to be done.  But the important work is done:  we're no longer venting moist air into the attic.  The house will be healthier for it.

I've thought more than once that we might do well to ditch the visions of heaven that include clouds, harps and lounging about all day.  Frankly, it sounds boring to me.  We've moved into this home and begun remaking things to improve the place, taking a shell and making it into a home, which takes a lot of work.  But when you sit back at the end of the day and look at what's been accomplished, you get just a little sense of the deep satisfaction that lies behind these words:  "And God saw that it was good."  

What would it be like, I wonder, to arrive in heaven to find a bunch of lumber, a tool belt, and every power tool imaginable, with a note:  "Here is the room you were promised:  you may prepare a place in My house."?  Maybe that isn't the vision you have, but I'll bet there's a creative endeavor out there that would give you joy if it were part of your heavenly work, isn't there?  Perhaps you're a baker, a painter, a writer, a photographer, a weaver - whatever it is, I'd be willing to bet it will be part of your work making heaven a lovely dwelling place.

Genesis tells us we are created in the image of God.  Our drive to create, to improve, to renovate is part of that imago Dei, no matter how it manifests itself.  Today, it's a soffit vent; tomorrow, it'll be a sermon.  Just another day in this lovely dwelling place we call home.  Thanks be to God.


  1. good to hear the problem is fixed... I remember when my folks got their house, shortly after we had to rewire the whole place as there were only two circuits in the whole house.

  2. not up for the sawing and hammering affair myself... but i'd be happy to paint some murals on those walls once they were up!

  3. I was thinking of you when I mentioned painting, HC - can we commission something someday? :-)