Even a cursory reading of Scripture should assure us that the world we live in has two realms—a physical realm and a spiritual realm. We might say that the natural one is material and the other realm is invisible or spiritual. But just because we can’t see the spiritual realm doesn’t make it any less real. It has the power to influence our lives—and the atmosphere in our home—more than we may realize. It influences the mind, will, and emotions of everyone who lives there.
Just as there are negatively and positively charged ions in the layers of our atmosphere, our home can have either a negatively or positively charged atmosphere, spiritually speaking. A positively charged atmosphere would be one filled with the presence of the Holy Spirit, and evidenced by the “fruit” of the spirit—love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self control (Gal. 5:22-23). A negatively charged atmosphere would be one marked by selfishness and personal ambition and “every evil thing”—things like quarreling, jealousy, anger, selfishness, slander, gossip, arrogance, and disorderly behavior. (James 3:16, 2 Cor. 12:20).
How can you tell which atmosphere is operating in your home at any given time? My friend Cheryl Sacks, in her book The Prayer Saturated Family, provides a helpful list of characteristics of what these atmospheres can look like:
Positively charged atmosphere: ***
- joyful spirit (not based on circumstances)
- hope for the future
- orderliness and peace
- an atmosphere of “open heavens” (God’s supernatural power is felt and seen)
- liberty and freedom
- faith and expectancy: God can do anything, no problem is too big for Him
- financial provision
- connected, warm, supportive
- compassion, forgiveness, patience
- respect, honor, and serving one another
- people are important; no person is undervalued
- unity, harmony, and encouragement
- attitude of victorious living
- alive with God’s presence, voice, and promises
- purity, honoring God
- health and healing
Negatively charged atmosphere:
- defeatism and lack of vision for the future
- confusion, chaos, and disorderliness
- demonic activity tolerated
- controlling and domineering
- proud and condescending
- burdened, weary, and hopeless
- poverty spirit and attitude of lack
- spiritually and emotionally cold
- hurt feelings, offenses, and grudge-holding
- selfishness and rebellion
- bitterness, anger, and sarcasm
- insecurity, fear, and anxiety
- lack of spiritual life or momentum
- impurity and vulgarity
- pervasive illnesses
For the Lord is the Spirit, and wherever the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. (2 Cor. 3:17)
Which characteristics above describe your home? Did you recognize any of either the negative conditions in your household (or in yourself)? Taking care of these will be the first step to building a solid house of prayer in your life.
The Bible promises us, “if we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us …” (1 John 1:9), and, “repent of your sins and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped away. Then times of refreshment will come from the presence of the Lord” (Acts 3:19-20). Repentance is the best spring cleaning for the soul you’ll ever have! I encourage you to take that step now to brush away the cobwebs and sweep out the dark corners of sin and pain that may be lurking in your life. Then throw open the windows of your heart to let in the light of God’s truth and the fresh wind of His Spirit. You’re sure to see a difference in the atmosphere of your home and life.
Next post: Building Your House of Prayer, Part 4: Rooms
(c) 2017 Arlyn Lawrence. All Rights Reserved.
*** Sacks, Cheryl, The Prayer Saturated Family, Chosen Books, Minneapolis: 2017, 52-53.