With the people nearing the promised land, God predicts, “When you have eaten your fill, and have built fine houses to live in, and your herds and flocks have multiplied, and your silver and gold have increased, and everything you own has prospered, beware lest your heart grow haughty and you forget the Lord your God” (Deuteronomy 8: 12-14). Here, I try not to forget.
O Lord, our dwelling place in every generation, bless, too, this house, its balustrades and finials, the frayed couch and curly maple table. Flood it with Your light, flowing over the gold bowl, the Imari plate. May it be Your will to visit this kitchen where the lemons pickle and the scent of yeast transforms from ferment to bread. Consecrate the beds—the trundle where our daughter tosses away her comforter, sleeping open to Your will; the mattress that our son outgrew, his feet poking beyond the blanket; our bower, where embrace outlives its evolutionary purposes. Let no fear ascend the stone steps, past the carnations in their clay boxes. Bestow abundant holiness upon the roses, upon the patio, upon the gravel paths. Allow peace—which is everything we’ve known here—to be all we ever need to know.