My House. My Rules. Live with It, Baby!

My mother is not a people pleaser.

I think she used to be but one day she grew up and discovered that God had given her a spine of her own.

So, she has a charming way of dealing with visiting company. “My house. My rules!”

This cheerfully delivered motto serves to guide grandchildren and grown guests alike. “You don’t like the way things are here, go home or grow up and get your own house. Run it anyway you like. But while you’re here . . . my house, my rules.”

Can’t really argue with that – well, I can’t anyway.

You’d think that her bossy manner would drive us all away except for obligatory holidays but that couldn’t be further from the truth. We flock to mom’s house. She feels no compulsion to please people but no one loves us like mom does – no one.

And while we enjoy her love and her support, the rules of her house set us at ease, allow us to gather and interact with a common civility. And we know that if someone disrupts those rules, they won’t do it for long – they won’t likely be banished but they will be dealt with by the maker of the rules. She is swift, sure, and fair and she makes really good pie.

God isn’t a people pleaser either. Have you noticed that?

When I was young, I loved verses like Psalm 122:1 “I rejoiced with those who said to me, Let us go to the house of the LORD.’” And Psalm 84:10 “Better is one day in your courts than a thousand elsewhere; I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than dwell in the tents of the wicked.”

God’s love drew me to Him and I naturally wanted (or supernaturally wanted) to be where He was, to be included in His household.

My spirit cried out with the Psalmist: “How lovely is your dwelling place, O LORD Almighty! My soul yearns, even faints, for the courts of the LORD; my heart and my flesh cry out for the living God.” “Blessed are those who dwell in your house; they are ever praising you.” Psalm 84:1, 2, 4

Included in the household of God – isn’t that an amazing idea?

I am one of His, allowed to dwell with Him and reside in His home. I belong. I have a place with Him.

But like my mother, He has no need to please others, particularly within His household.

“My house. My rules.”

Again, I can’t argue with that. His rules set me at ease, allow me to interact with others in His household with a common civility. I trust that when I disrupt those rules, He will deal with me. He will not banish me but He is swift, sure and fair.

As we ascend with other pilgrims on our journey to the heart of God, we must learn to let go of the old ways, to abandon the rules of our former households, to learn a new way, to abide by the rules of His household.

If we don’t like it, we can leave, get our own house, run it anyway we like.

But He won’t be in that house, He won’t dwell there and that house won’t survive the coming storm.

His house, his rules.

It sound harsh to some, unyielding and downright undemocratic but, you know what?

No one loves us like He does – no one.

I was glad when they said to me “Let us go to the house of the Lord!” How about you?

Will you ascend with those who know that better is one day in His courts than thousands elsewhere? Will you come on the journey to the heart of God?

There will be pie.

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    The Conversation

  1. KB Cook says:

    Lois, this is wonderful reinforcement & a good reminder that “boundaries is good” for life, liberty and happy-ness pursuit! I grew up with a mom and a grandmother cut from the same cloth so it was no big surprise that as a mother, I, too, set boundaries for my home. (It was where all the neighborhood kids hung out all the time, by the way.) I’m grateful that I had strong & loving models as a child and now I see that my own kids who are now parents themselves, are setting household boundaries for both residents of their homes as well as their guests (tall and small). Thanks for sharing this and being a good encourager of the Body. Be blest.

  2. Joe Crowley says:

    Sylvia, You Rock!!!

  3. Carmen says:

    If there’s pie, I’m SO there! Lol…
    This was a good post for me personally. I tend to be much too much of a people pleaser. I always thought I cared about what people thought, but lately, I’m getting a little fed up with what people think. Doesn’t what I think matter too? You can’t please everyone anyway, and the only One that really matters is God–so I’ll focus on pleasing Him. Thanks!

  4. Amen. My children sometimes bring home kids who say things like, “Well, at MY house…” and they always hear from me, “you’re not at your house, sweetie, but you can be in five minutes.” Weeds out troublemakers in a heartbeat.

    A good cup of boundaries with pie is a beautiful thing. 🙂

  5. I want to go to your your mother’s house with you! And yes, The house of the Lord!