The Joy Thief: What actually makes a house a home
Stefani Pady

Inside: Join us as we dive into the temptation to “keep up with the Joneses”, how to find contentment, making a house a home (what a true dream home is made of), and what the Bible says about true wisdom. Don’t miss our free guide breaking down the attributes of the Proverbs 31 Woman, awesome women in Scripture, and tactical tips to implement from Proverbs 31.

“If you live like no one else now, later you can live and GIVE like no one else.”
Dave Ramsey


Picture this… A home perfectly decorated. The décor reminds you of a Pottery Barn store, the walls are the perfect color, the kitchen is a dream, and the organization of the drawers would make even The Home Edit ladies proud. The closet is full of pretty clothes, organized by color and season with shoes galore to match. * chef’s kiss *  

This was my dream. Couple this with a few babies and perfectly-perfected Pinterest parties and it describes the home and life I’d planned to create. 

I grew up with very little. I would regularly get home from school and see that the lights had been shut off. This didn’t disturb me because it happened so often. I would just walk a few doors down to my aunt’s house and hope for some AC and food (our cupboards were usually bare, too). This upbringing really shaped the way I treated money and my definition of success in early adulthood. My entire focus became to reach a goal of being financially free. 

A few years after college graduation (and some “big girl” paychecks later), I thought I’d finally found the freedom I was looking for.

To maintain the dream I mentioned above, I devoured everything. We would go to dinners that cost the same as our monthly car note. We said yes to things that piled up hundreds of thousands of dollars of debt: cars, pools, couches, you name it, we bought it.   

We strived to create the perfect home life but were living beyond our means and our priorities were not what God intended. I lacked the understanding of what truly makes a house (and life) a home.   

“By wisdom a house is built, and through understanding it is established; through knowledge its rooms are filled with rare and beautiful treasures.”
Proverbs 24:3-4


I had failed to consider something vital: everything good that I have is given to me by God, including my paycheck.

God entrusted me with it, and I was stewarding it badly. He wanted my time spent with people, not keeping up with them. Without Biblical wisdom, it is easy to get caught up in a need to live like others. 

We worry that our home must be flawlessly kept, our kids must be wonderfully well-mannered at all times (spoiler alert: that is an impossible feat to attain), and that we must show up to all the things like everyone else (who seems to live an impeccable life and make it look so dang easy).

Set yourself free, my friend. They are not perfect nor are they meant to be.

Sidenote: Do you know what Jesus said we need to do to be perfect (or complete)?  

Jesus answered, “If you want to be perfect, go, sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.” – Matthew 19:21


In this verse, Jesus is speaking to a rich young ruler. This isn’t necessarily a call for all Christians to sell all of their possessions, but it is a wake-up call to consider where our priorities lie.   

Are God’s priorities first in my life? Or am I like the rich young ruler who, apparently, prioritized his wealth above all else?

The temptation to put wealth (and stuff) first in our lives is still very real today, but when we lean into Jesus, He changes our hearts. We need not be perfect (no one is), but if we lean into Him, He will work on our souls.  

If I am really honest and get still enough to hear the quiet of my heart, I don’t want my home to be run like everyone else’s. I hope my kids feel special when they walk through the doors, and I promise you it is not the paint color on the walls lighting their hearts on fire, it’s me ready to hug their souls. I love the unique “Pady” traditions we have created (which include late nights and messy kitchens).

We need our priorities in place. And yes, of course I want a clean home, with candles lit and for my kids to play sports and follow their dreams, but I don’t want to tirelessly try to keep up with other families at the expense of my own.

We create a dream home, not by filling it with as many possessions as possible, but by filling our homes with wisdom, knowledge, and the love of Jesus.


A Biblical Example

The Proverbs 31 woman is a great example of who we can be in our home. She’s confident and dignified. She is uniquely special and keeps a beautiful home. Characteristics such as shrewdness, strength, generosity, and kindness describe her approach to life. Wisdom flows from her lips, but most importantly, she fears the Lord (v.30). This woman portrays what it looks like to put God first and let the rest fall into place. 

Here’s a couple more things I love about her: 

  • She has help! You don’t have to do it alone (v15) 
  • She has wealth, she just stewards it better than I did in early adulthood (v22) 
  • She is selective and resourceful (v13-14) 
  • And she builds a home full of laughter and respect (v28)


My prayer for you today is that you’ll be able to create the dream home above with a content heart while being a good steward of the gifts that God has given you.

If you want to dig more into the example of the Proverbs 31 woman, I have a treat for you… I recently taught a great Bible study on the Proverbs 31 woman, and I’d love to share what I learned (and know it is NOT adding more to your plate!). Snag that for free below. 


Grab the Proverbs 31 Woman Guide ✨FREE✨

Proverbs 31 isn’t a checklist of requirements, but it does show us things we as women have the opportunity to be. Grab our free guide below to explore the attributes of the Proverbs 31 Woman, other awesome women in Scripture, and 3 tactical tips to implement.

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1 Comment

  1. Michele

    Well done!


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