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Christian Living

What I Learned From the Parade of Homes

What I Learned From the Parade of Homes

I’m not sure how widespread this is, but in our corner of Michigan, there’s an annual event in several cities called the Parade of Homes. It’s like a progressive dinner, but instead of eating at each stop, you look at the house.

This is an occasion for builders to showcase their work, in hopes of selling their house or finding new clients.

I’ve always been intrigued by the Parade of Homes but have never gone. I worried that seeing these houses, many with extravagant extras, would turn the satisfaction with what I have into an unhealthy desire for more.

When it comes to possessions, I seek contentment with what I have, not something bigger or more shiny.

However, this year—with plans to build a house for the first time—we decided it might be a good idea to check out this year’s houses in the parade, to get ideas of what to include and learn what to avoid.

Still, I worried this tour would skew my perceptions of what our new home should look like.

Overall, we enjoyed visiting these houses. Aside from being educational, it was an inexpensive outing that lasted four days. We did get some practical ideas for our house and saw some things we want to avoid. We saw the finishes and treatments we liked and some we can take off our list.

We also confirmed we don’t want a big house that will be costly to run and take too much time to maintain; I don’t want a bunch of fancy, impractical things that are likely going to break.

I feel sorry for the people who will buy these huge houses. I don’t think they will find peace there. A big house may be impressive, but I don’t see happiness in their future.

But mostly I learned that an affordable, comfortable house is the right one for me.

Peter DeHaan writes about biblical Christianity to confront status quo religion and live a life that matters. He seeks a fresh approach to following Jesus through the lens of Scripture, without the baggage of made-up traditions and meaningless practices. Read more in his books, blog, and weekly email updates.

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Christian Living

Four Ways to Worship God

Four Ways to Worship God

When I think about worshiping God, I first think of singing songs to him and about him. Yes, that’s a part of worship, but there’s more.

Next, I think about worshiping God by giving money to him and his causes. That’s another aspect of worship, but there’s more.

Third, I think about worshiping God by performing acts of service. There’s a myriad of ways for this to happen and each can be another facet of worship, but there’s more.

Fourth, I think about worshiping God by creating art. Sometimes art is about him and sometimes it’s for him, creating for the creator. After all, he is the ultimate creator and we are made in his image; therefore, we are made to create.

The problem is I’ve never considered myself a creative person. I’m an analytical guy, logic and structure is how I’m wired, not to create.

God began to change this perspective in me when I attended the Breathe Christian Writers Conference last year. Through the people there, he showed me writing is another way to create art.

Not only is writing a spiritual act for me, but now it’s becoming a creative act, too; one I use to worship God.

How do you worship God?

Peter DeHaan writes about biblical Christianity to confront status quo religion and live a life that matters. He seeks a fresh approach to following Jesus through the lens of Scripture, without the baggage of made-up traditions and meaningless practices. Read more in his books, blog, and weekly email updates.

Categories
Christian Living

Do You Create for the Creator?

Do You Create for the Creator?

I’ve never considered myself to be a creative person, not like artists and musicians or architects and engineers. While I may be good at tweaking something existing, making something new is not how I’m wired.

I’m definitely a left-brain thinker: analytical and logical, a processor of information and problem-solver. Yet, I’m also a writer—and writing is creating. Each blog post, each article, and each book I write is the artistic birth of something not before seen; it is a new creation.

Creating things, be it art, music, buildings, devices, or even literature is a spiritual experience, be it a good spiritual or a bad spiritual. I, for one, endeavor for my creations of words to be a good spiritual.

God is a creative being. He created the universe (don’t fixate on the how, you’ll miss the point) and we are the pinnacle of his creation.

I recently tweeted: “God is the ultimate artist, creation is his masterpiece, and each of us is a work of art.”

We are made is his image, so it is inherently characteristic for us to yearn to make things—just as he made us.

As a child, I gave pictures to my mom; I now give my writing to God—and I believe he receives them with even more joy.

Peter DeHaan writes about biblical Christianity to confront status quo religion and live a life that matters. He seeks a fresh approach to following Jesus through the lens of Scripture, without the baggage of made-up traditions and meaningless practices. Read more in his books, blog, and weekly email updates.