If you read this blog regularly, you know I enjoy a lot of the programs on HGTV.
I usually tape Lottery Dream Home on Friday nights. I enjoy watching people look for homes after their lives have been changed by a winning lottery ticket. I am going to say . . . I’m not comfortable with the host, for obvious reasons. But I do enjoy seeing all the homes people look at, knowing they can afford them.
I was watching a rerun of the show when I started to imagine what my dream home would be like.
My perfect dream home
I would want lots of bedrooms so my kids and grandkids could come hang out.
I would want lots of cabinets so I could keep all of my “stuff” to enjoy.
I would want a big closet with three sections: maybe one day, probably never, and good to go.
My shoes would be labeled once a year, worn-out but comfortable, and worthy of wearing.
My kitchen could be labeled Thanksgiving and Christmas and The Rest of the Year.
I would want lots of “self-cleaning” windows and air conditioners that always worked.
I would want a study for Jim and a reading room for me.
Finally, I’d want a master bath that made me smile.
My not-quite-perfect home
I spent all morning washing windows. They looked amazing, until the sun came up the next day. Why can’t I get my windows completely free of smudges and streaks?!
I spent a long time searching my kitchen cabinets for a bowl that I knew I still owned. Now, I’m spending time wondering who I gave it to or where I left it.
The air conditioners are all running nicely. I’ll pause here so I can find a piece of wood to knock on.
The truth is, I currently live in my favorite house, of all we have owned. (And, in our forty years of marriage, we have owned six different homes.)
If I won a lot of money, I would stay in this house.
That is a nice thing to be able to say.
I might install those “self-cleaning” windows if I could. (BTW: If any of you invent those, I’ll go on Shark Tank with you. We could make a fortune!)
Finding a dream home
The Dream Home episode I watched featured a young couple who had won a lot of money on a lottery ticket. Before their good fortune, they had been living in a smaller home, with her brother and his wife and their combined children. (I hope she got her brother something wonderful with their winnings too!)
The couple had bought a beautiful home in a wonderful neighborhood, and their lives were radically changed. Their children each had their own bedroom. No one had to share a bathroom, and everything looked new and perfectly on trend.
Their living situation had radically changed, but did winning the money change them?
The truth behind most wins
I read an interesting article in Reader’s Digest about life after winning the lottery. The article discussed the things we will probably never hear about on that popular dream home show.
- 70 percent of all lotto winners spend or lose all of their winnings in the first five years.
- Count on being exploited by others, often family and friends.
- Whatever you win, someone else won more.
- Those who worked for wealth will rarely consider a winner of wealth as an equal.
- Your friendships and other relationships will be changed.
- Yet most people are glad they won anyway.
The perfect home is yours—Jesus promised
Jesus told his disciples that he was going to heaven to build them a mansion, complete with the dream closets, kitchens, and always-working appliances. It will be decorated with eternally perfect furnishings and never need cleaning. (Notice I don’t have a biblical reference for that statement. That is my own wording of John 14:1–3 from the HGTV version of God’s word.)
The actual translation is, “Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also” (John 14:1–3).
Those are some of the most comforting words in Scripture. Jesus intended them to be comforting. He knew his disciples were facing one of the most difficult seasons of their lives. They were going to need to be able to look beyond his death to the resurrection.
Nothing would be “perfect” in their lives, except their faith and the rewards of their faith. Things would be good, but not perfect. All of us will get a “dream home” someday, but not on earth.
I love my house, but the A/C is going to break someday (where is that piece of wood?!).
The windows are going to get dirty again (unless one of you can invent a self-cleaning version.)
I love almost everything about my house today, but it isn’t perfect.
The reason our heavenly home is a perfect mansion is because it has one luxury that can’t be acquired here on earth: we aren’t “with Jesus” face-to-face.
Jesus hasn’t taken us to heaven yet, to be with him.
The sure bet
Your odds, on average, of winning a big prize in the lottery are about one in fourteen million. But no matter how much you might win, you won’t be able to buy the perfect mansion.
Perfect mansions can only be purchased by Jesus and only received as a gift.
And, when each of us who are saved move to our heavenly mansion one day, we will find the guest room has already been occupied—permanently.
If you are a Christian, you have made the only “sure bet” there is in this life. The odds of winning your mansion are one in one. Our faith in Christ guarantees that our lives will be changed and heaven is our future.
Whom do you know that needs a winning ticket?
Everyone deserves to own a dream home someday.