Recently, my wife and I have toyed with the idea of moving from the small quiet community of Blair to the hustle and bustle of Omaha. It seems that we get this idea every couple of years. This one began when I drove by a sign that said “Six bedrooms”! It seemed perfect. We made an appointment to look at the house a couple of times. After viewing it, we liked the house but were concerned with the traffic etc. on the street. What that one house did though, was set off a three week house hunting trip. We poured over the internet MLS listing of the Omaha metro area. We made appointments to view houses. We expanded our price range to more than I ever thought we would or could pay for a house.
After one busy weekend that consisted of five or six house showings, my wife asked me if I notice all of the religious statues in the different yards. The she asked, “You know in the Bible, people would build and worship idols and turn away from God? Are houses our idols?” My understanding of her question is: Do we put so much time into making our houses our palace that it has indeed become our idol?
Besides all of the actual “idols” we saw in various yards of these homes, we noticed that with each successive house we looked at, each builder or owner tried to outdo each other with various luxury upgrades. Granite counters, walnut cabinets, oak floors, porcelain tile, walk-in showers, bath tubs the size of a small swimming pool. Home theaters, multiple laundry rooms, ponds and fountains. Landscaping professionally done. As these “features” piled up, so did the price. As the price skyrocketed, so did the property taxes until the monthly amount that I would have to pay for property tax was greater than what my mortgage payment would be. Which is what prompted the question. Have we created our own idols? Are our houses and all that goes in and around them more important than serving God? Do we spend so much time trying to one-up our neighbor that we really don’t get to know them? I know driving to church on a Sunday morning, I notice many people slaving away in their yards. I often ask myself – do they know God?
It gets me thinking…
So, are we moving? Nope – at least not in the foreseeable future. After looking at many houses, we realized that we’re perfectly satisfied with our present house. Sure, we would love more room in our kitchen but other than that, we’re comfortable. [And it only takes me 45 minutes to mow the lawn :)] We would love to live closer to church but I guess we will just have to make a bigger commitment to get more involved; knowing that it will mean more driving. We would love to be part of a small group – to make friends and develop relationships.