Over 20 years ago while attending a conference in Chicago with my husband, I came across a plaque that held my attention. The psychologist Carl Jung had carved this phrase in Latin over the front door of his house in Zurich, Switzerland: “Bidden or not bidden, God is present.” It made such an impact on me that I purchased the sign and hung it in my home, where it remains today. The statement is a constant reminder to me that I should be certain to always invite the Lord into my home.
What a simple truth. Whether we invite God into our lives or not, He is simply always there. It is up to us to extend the invitation for Him to enter. Are we living our lives in such a way that we can feel His presence?
As a parent I feel a great responsibility to teach my children of Christ. The gospel of Matthew teaches us that when we establish our homes upon “the Rock” (Matthew 7), we will be protected from the evils of the world. “…The rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock.”
The prophet Samuel explains: “The Lord is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer; … in him will I trust: he is my shield.” (Samuel 22) As we establish Christ-centered homes we can build a fortress against the darkness of the world.
First, we need to learn of Him. We can do this by reading scriptures or telling Bible stories to our children. As we learn who the Savior is, we can follow His example. We can develop patterns of prayer as we gather together as families. Helping our family develop a personal relationship with the Lord will certainly invite His presence into our homes.
Next, we need to remember Him. At the Last Supper Jesus taught the disciples about His great sacrifice and asked that we always remember Him. “This is my body which is given for you: this do in remembrance of me” (Luke 22:19). We do this by partaking of the sacrament each week. Establishing a home where we observe the Sabbath day is a sign to God that we remember and love Him.
Always we can strive to be obedient to God’s commandments. We can follow the gospel Christ established while on the earth. Christ’s ministry was spent serving, loving and rescuing all He met. We can develop habits in our homes by serving others, being kind and accepting of all people, and looking to help those who cross our paths. As we follow His perfect example of love, we will surely feel His Spirit with us.
One of my favorite scriptures is found in Isaiah: “Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust, and not be afraid: for the Lord JEHOVAH is my strength and my song; he also is become my salvation” (Isaiah 12:2). I know as I remember Christ and trust in Him, He truly does bless and strengthen my life. May we build our homes upon the Rock of our Redeemer who will surely be a protection from the storms we face. May we remember God is always present, and ever waiting for us to invite Him in. May we be blessed to feel Him there.