As we prepare to get the keys to the house in a little over two weeks (oh, did I mention we moved the closing date up a week?), I find myself thinking about how crazy and amazing this all is. I know it’s just a house, and a small one at that, but we do feel like the whole situation – the fact that we have somewhere we know we want to be for 5+ years, our ability to make a down payment having worked all of 4 weeks with post-college salaries, the potential this investment has to alleviate college loan burdens – is entirely a blessing from God.
I met a very wonderful woman for about 2 hours of my life – she is a dear friend’s aunt – and during that meeting she told me about the Jewish mitzvah (commandment/tradition) of the Mezuzah and I think that it is just beautiful. A mezuzah is a parchment scroll on which passages from Deuteronomy are written in Hebrew. The scroll is then rolled up and put into a case – usually somewhat decorative – and that case is nailed to the doorframes of houses. Traditionally it is affixed immediately upon moving into a new home. The passage starts like this:
“Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one. Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates.” (Deut. 6:4-9)
For all my bible college friends, here’s the Hebrew:
As a family is nailing on their mezuzah, they say a blessing acknowledging God as sovereign over the house and it’s occupants. The case is nailed at an angle pointing into the door, signifying that God and His Word dwell there as well.
I could not think of a better way to start off with a new house. Today we ordered our very own kosher mezuzah (www.alljudaica.com) to remind ourselves who this house came from and for what purpose we are working on it. In a very literal way we are writing His commandments upon the doorframe of our house – His house – as a symbol of our desire to use this house the way God would have us use it as we seek to love Him with all our hearts, souls, and strength.