|My father and grandparents' homestead in Limón, Costa Rica|
True story. Six years ago I was sitting at my desk at the church I work for when the (then) senior pastor strolled by, stopped, and said to me: "This is the word of the Lord for you: Leave your father's house!" Now, the pastor wasn't given to sudden prophecy like that so I sat up and paid attention. Then I flinched realizing that the photo on my computer desktop was, literally, my father's house (above)! The pastor had no way of knowing that.
Thus began my journey of really meditating on what it means to leave my father's house for my Father's house.
Listen, daughter, and pay careful attention: Forget your people and your father’s house. Psalm 45:10
This wedding psalm of David's is one of my favorites. It is actually a prophetic psalm, starting as a love song from a bride to her groom, the King, then morphing by verse 6 into the Bride of Christ's love song to Jesus. Father God joins in by verse 10 as well. It speaks to me on so many levels, but the next line is a treasure:
Let the king be enthralled by your beauty; honor him, for he is your lord. v. 11
My experience as a child in my father's house certainly wasn't one of having the man of the house so taken by my beauty. His own brokenness made receiving love like getting a merit badge. You had to earn it and could lose it in an instance.
I had seen myself as long delivered from all of the effects of such conditional love, but God knew my heart better. I asked the Lord and still ask Him what it means to leave home.
To leave and to cleave. “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.” This is a profound mystery—but I am talking about Christ and the church. Ephesians 5:31,32
There is a progression in both scripture passages of first leaving home and then joining the household of the Beloved.
If you and I don't make that transition from our earthly homes, we'll always stay out in the foyer of our Heavenly Father's house afraid to step inside. But inside is where the good stuff lies: a closeness, an intimate love and a safety we can know nowhere else. Our identity, our purpose. To "know even as we are known" (1 Corinthians 13:12); leaving our old self image, our old status in exchange for a new one.
Living as the daughter or son of another Father. As the bride in a royal house,the House of Yahweh.
This is how we honor Him; by allowing Him to lavish His love on us. By allowing His captivated heart to change who we are on the inside.
Take a look at a picture of your father's house or your family homestead. Remember the joys. Remember the pain. Have you truly left it, forsaking all others since you got married to Christ? Has an identity exchange occurred?