by James Merritt

God's Blueprint for a Beautiful Home
James Merritt
Deuteronomy 6:1-9


1. There was an artist who wanted to paint a picture of the most beautiful thing in the world. So he went to his pastor and said, ''What is the most beautiful thing in the world?'' The pastor said, ''Faith - you can feel it in every church, and find it at every altar.''

2. The artist asked a young bride the same question. She said, ''Love - love builds poverty into riches, it sweetens tears, it makes much of little, it is the most beautiful thing in the world.''

3. He talked next to a soldier just back from battle. He said, ''Peace - peace is so beautiful because war is so ugly, and wherever you find peace you find beauty.''

4. He thought to himself, ''Faith, love, peace - how can I paint them?''

5. Well when he went back to his family that night, walking through the door he saw Faith in the eyes of his children, Love in the eyes of his wife, and the Peace that love and faith had built. So he painted the picture of ''the most beautiful thing in the world,'' and when he had finished it he called it ''Home.''

6. I do believe there is not a more beautiful thing in the world than a true home. But an artist, painting a picture of the home as it is today, would find it hard to paint such a beautiful picture. The divorce rate has risen 700% in this century and continues to rise. There is now one divorce for every 1.8 marriages. Over a million children a year are involved in divorce cases, and 13 million children under the age of 18 have one or both parents that are missing.

7. Even in homes where families are together the picture is increasingly worse. Twenty percent of all murders are family-related, and one-third of female homicides are committed by the husbands or the partners. Reported cases of child abuse doubled from 1976 to 1981, and had gone up almost 400% by the mid 1980's.1

Sociologist Carle C. Zimmerman of Harvard University said, ''The Western f ...

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