House of Fear

Lately, I haven’t sat down long enough to write anything except contracts. I am a Realtor in Springfield, Illinois, a small midwestern city. Lately, I feel like I live in California (minus the perfect weather and beaches and healthy restaurants). I feel like this because the real estate market is in crazy-mode right now. I feel like if I don’t schedule a showing within a few hours of a home being listed, we will miss it and even if we get there, we will most likely end up in a multiple offer situation, paying thousands over asking price and waiving inspections and appraisals. Never seen anything like it. I am eating, sleeping and breathing homes right now. 

All this running around to show houses morning, noon, and night combined with trying to investigate alternative ways to find listings that are not yet listed, makes for an unsettled brain and body. I have been letting finding-other-people-a-home dominate my own ability to embrace and enjoy my own home.

Actually, being in my physical home is something I am missing, but not as much as I miss being at home in my head and heart. 

I didn’t even realize, until I forced myself to sit still and read/pray/reflect this morning, that I have been avoiding going “home”. Home to myself. Avoiding the sitting, the reflecting, the accepting of some personal circumstances in my life that I don’t want to be true. 

It’s just so much less painful to run around showing other people homes.

This is a symptom of the lie I have been believing: “If this happens/or doesn’t happen….THEN I will be happy/content/serene/free.

If the good things happen that I wish to happen, then I will be happy. If the bad things don’t happen, then I will be content and serene. 

All of these states of being are desirable to me, but are precariously hinged on what may or may not happen in the future. They are 100% conditional. 

That is not what I claim to believe about God or his grace. It is anti. 

When I live in the “if-then” mindset, I am living in a constant state of fear. 

When we are constantly asking ourselves, “What if I lose my job? What if I get sick, if my marriage doesn’t work out, or an accident happens? What if tomorrow a natural disaster or global pandemic changes all my plans? What if I don’t get the promotion? What if I can’t pay my bills? What if…..? 

Brennan Manning tells us in his book, “The Ragamuffin Gospel” (148), “Once these questions guide our lives, we take out a second mortgage in the house of fear.” 

I love that image, especially as a realtor. I know God was asking me to listen up when the few pages I read today were talking about homes and houses! He beat me at my own game! I love that he meets me where I am at.

Photo by Kindel Media on

“Jesus says simply, ‘Remain in me, as I in you’ (John 15:34).

‘Anyone who loves me will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we shall come to him and make a HOME in him’ (John 14:23). Our world, our cities and offices and churches are inundated with homeless people. They are vagabonds who are in flight, who never come home to themselves. They seek a safe place through alcohol or drugs or security in success, competence, friends, pleasure, notoriety, knowledge, or even a little religion. They have become strangers to themselves, people who have an address but are never at home” (Manning p.148). 

“To those of us in flight, who are afraid to turn around lest we run into ourselves, God says, ‘You have a home. I am your home. Claim me as your home. You will find it to be the intimate place where I have found my home. It is right where you are, in your innermost being. In your heart.’” (Manning p.148)

Call off the home search. Stop scrambling and stressing and searching. You are home. You are the home. Let God reside. 

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