It’s Not Where You Lived, But How You Lived

Written by Dan Seaborn on . Posted in Local

houseDuring the holidays, many of you may visit the home where you grew up. Sometimes it’s fun to reflect back on what you’ve done or where you’ve lived. Recently, I was thinking about all the different houses where my family has resided in the Holland area.

I remember the first time my boys threw a ball and our daughter played with her baby doll at our home on West 20th Street. It was wide-bodied and flat as though a giant, from on top of a beanstalk, had stepped on it. Yet, despite how widespread it was, it is the warmth and coziness that are my fondest memories.

Then we moved to Glendale Street where there were no fences separating the houses. The neighbors all shared their property and kids could run freely and easily in between homes. We incorporated the trees and hedges around the neighborhood to design an elaborate Frisbee golf course that all the neighbors shared.

Then we never imagined we’d live in a house like the one we moved to on Camelback. It’s where we survived some of the teen years and spent many hot, sunny days sloshing around in the little swimming pool we put in the backyard.

As I was reminiscing about all these places, it occurred to me that it’s not the address that made our house a home; it’s the memories we created. A place where everybody is comfortable, feels safe, and where there is a lot of fun.
 
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Our family will always be the Seaborns no matter where we live. We will experience ups and downs regardless of the type of home that shelters us. It doesn’t mean every memory will be of fun, happy times. There may be a particular house where one of our children or as a couple, we struggled through a difficult time. That could be the thought associated with that residence. What we experienced, however, could have happened in any house we occupied so it’s important to recognize that the physical structure is just that – a building made of concrete, drywall and some glass windows.


The size of your house shouldn’t matter either. It’s logical to think a family of five would be more comfortable in a 2,000 square foot house versus a 1,200 square foot house but the attitude of the people inside the home or the memories created has nothing to do with the amount of floor space they inhabit. Sometimes when five people are forced to use one bathroom, they learn more quickly about sharing, time management and multi-tasking. They may also grow up less modest than someone who grew up with their own bathroom. It’s not right or wrong, just different. I imagine there would be some pretty funny stories coming out of that bathroom.

My thought for you today is don’t focus so much on where you are living as much as how you are living. What memories are you creating inside your house? Think about what your kids will describe to people about where they grew up. Will they be stoic and just describe the size and color of the house where they lived or will they be animated when they share what happened in that house? Make sure that you are setting an example for your children because that’s the memory they’ll have someday when you are gone and they are the ones changing addresses.

Author Information
Dan Seaborn
About:
Dan Seaborn is the founder of Winning At Home, Inc., an organization designed to assist and encourage people of all ages and stages of family development. As a featured speaker at churches and large-scale events such as marriage conferences, corporate functions, and university assemblies, Dan Seaborn has earned recognition as a powerful and passionate communicator. Through practical illustrations and memorable real-life examples, he encourages individuals and families to lead Christ-centered homes.

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