Cheer. That is such a wonderful word to describe a home, isn’t it? Cheerful. Cheering. Cheeriness. Cheerly. When used in the form of a noun, it means “optimism, happiness and confidence.” An example of cheer as a noun is, “His dad was full of cheer as he watched his son play his heart out in the game.” But when used as a verb, it means, “to shout for joy or in praise or encouragement.” An example would be, “You could hear the dad cheer for his son as he played his heart out in the game!” See the difference? In the first example, cheer is what the dad possessed – happiness and confidence in his son as he watched him play. But in the second example, that possession has voice! His cheer overflows from within the dad and is expressed toward his son.
This is what I would love to encourage us to do as we long to bring cheer to our own homes. To encourage us to FIRST possess cheer. Because we can’t express what we don’t possess. So, how can we have cheer that shows through our life as confidence, happiness and optimism?
- A personal relationship with Jesus Christ. “In Him and through faith in Him we may approach God with freedom and confidence,” Ephesians 3:12 Nothing compares to knowing Jesus. When my confidence is being challenged and I don’t know answers to some of life’s troubles or difficulties, it is when I look to Christ that a cheerfulness wells up in me that only can come from Him. And when things in life are just peachy, exciting and even adventuresome, that steady peace of being able to place my confidence in the fact that He is with me, it simply creates a calm & cheer that I do believe means more to Him than I realize. If you do not know how to have a personal relationship with God through faith in Jesus Christ, listen to my friend, Steve Livengood, share how you can enjoy a personal relationship with the Lord starting now.
2. Decorate with inspiration. Nothing speaks louder, softer, or deeper than words. When your family and friends can walk through your home and read uplifting and inspirational verses and phrases, that invites so much cheer. Consider making your own signs, (if you are the creative type), or find someone who has been given the talent. I did yesterday. I met a woman who makes some of the most amazing signs and after I drew off what I was wanting, she said she could make it for our home! And I can’t wait! I’ll share that one with you soon!
3. Open the drapes! Lift the blinds! Let the sunshine pour in! When the sun is rising in the morning, it is such a cheerful invitation to embrace a new day. To see the sunshine pouring in the windows, casting shadows, and causing crystal or glassware to sparkle, to showcase the colors in the room and to highlight the atmosphere…it’s all what a little sunshine will do. Look at each room of your home. Is is too dark? Are the window treatments to heavy? See how you may can make some changes in your home so that sunshine can come pouring in each room.
4. Have fun in the kitchen. The way to a man’s heart is through his stomach, but a way to a child’s heart is “quality time” … and one place in the house where so much fun, laughter, and cheer can be expressed is in the kitchen. Find a cute little apron for “him and/or her” and let them roll up their sleeves to bake, cook or just help create a masterpiece of a meal. Or maybe just an after school snack that they can say ‘they’ made on their own. But when preparing food for the family truly is what you enjoy, and it brings you cheer, then it will always be a memory with your family as a way to express what is possessed – and that is, that meal time truly is a time of cheer!
5. Always have surprises! A cheerful word can sometimes be felt the most when people are surprised with our love and care for them. Those little unexpected things like coming home from school to a plate of cupcakes and fresh flowers. Or a frisbee covered in Doritos with a juice box sitting on the porch swing. Maybe a couple of tickets to your husband’s favorite game, or even a little basket of bath beads and soaps for your teenage daughter. But why stop there! How about a treat for a co-worker left on their desk, or a gift delivered to a friend’s front door that you ordered off Amazon? Just little happies that say, “Nothing brings me more cheer than cheering for you!”
I know I said “5 Ways”…. but I just want to give you 3 more!
6. Music. Music. Music. Rip and I love to turn on KLove radio in the mornings as we fix breakfast, load his truck and get our day going because there is something about music that stirs up cheer in our heart. When you are in your home, maybe consider turning off the TV, disconnecting from media and techie things, and simply play uplifting happy music.
7. Plants, greenery, and fresh produce. There is something about plants, greenery and fresh fruits and vegetables that also enhances a cheery disposition. It’s because “living” things just seem to promote a sense of appreciation for what has God created. It’s untampered with. A fresh ivy or a vase of tree branches, or a bowl of fresh lemons and limes ready for a cold glass of tea is just a natural way of inspiring cheer in the home – a happiness and optimism that is full of gratitude for what only God can do.
8. Create rooms that welcome with cheer. When a room is dark, weighted with too much clutter, strode with too many objects, and over loaded with heavy fabrics it does seem to have an impact on how people feel in that space. But when a room is light, bright, not too decorated, and has a very simple and warm style, it really does uplift the mood and helps create cheer. Hang that inspirational sign we mentioned earlier, provide blankets, fluffy pillows, very little pretty-pretties, and a soothing feel to the room.
I hope you’ve been inspired in ways you can bring cheer to your home. Always have fun…keep the laughter…don’t be too serious….pick your battles…and most importantly remember,
“God loves a cheerful giver.” 2 Corinthians 9:7