the house that built me

I bought Miranda Lambert’s new CD, Revolution, about a month or so ago. She has this song on the album called The House That Built Me. It’s song number 10.

I listened to that song over, and over, and over again.

 The chorus just resonates with how I’ve been feeling lately:

 “I thought if I could touch this place or feel it
This brokenness inside me might start healing
Out here it’s like I’m someone else
I thought that maybe I could find myself
If I could just come in I swear I’ll leave
Won’t take nothing but a memory
From the house that built me.”

 It seems like the older I get, and the closer I get to having children of my own, the more and more memories from my childhood and my childhood home rush over me like waves in the ocean.

If I close my eyes right now, I can see the entire house. Walking through the front door put you right into the living room. From there, you had three choices – stay in the living room, turn left to go into the (very tiny) eat-in kitchen, or go down the hallway to one of the (three) bedrooms, or to the only bathroom in the house. The first bedroom on the right was my parents and the second – which was the master bedroom – was the bedroom that my three brothers shared. The last door on the left was the smallest room in the house and the one that I shared with my little sister. There was no basement and no garage.

On the outside, this house didn’t look like much. In fact, most couples nowadays wouldn’t even want it for a starter home. But on the inside, it was really something.

On the inside there was a dad who worked two, sometimes three, jobs so that my mom could stay home and raise all five of us kiddos, the last three who were all “unplanned”, and one ornery miniature schnauzer that completed the group in a way that even we couldn’t have imagined.

The inside was what made that little structure a home. I can remember my parents tucking me in at night, singing to me while they did so. I remember playing board games and card games with friends and family. I remember family meals every night no matter how busy the day had been. I remember watching my parents have their devotion time every morning while sipping their coffee. These are the memories from my childhood.

I look back on that tiny little house and wish so badly that I could go back and visit. (Those of you who have been to that tiny little house are probably laughing at the prospect. If I were to go back now I would get robbed or asked how much I charge for my “services”.) I’m so grateful for my time there. So grateful that that little house taught me so many things. Like appreciation for what you do have and the realization that the structure of the building is way less important than what is inside it. That people – all people – are sinners in need of the saving Grace that is offered through a relationship with Jesus, regardless of how much money they have (or don’t have, as it was in my ‘hood). That was the house that built me. I only hope that someday I can give my children the same thing.

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4 Responses to “the house that built me”


  1. 1 nicknorasmom March 5, 2010 at 7:16 pm

    Laura, This brought tears to my eyes. Yes I have been to your house growing up- but what I remember wasn’t the size of the structure, but the size of the hearts inside. You are going to be an excellent mother, because of the example that was set for you.

  2. 2 lifelemons March 5, 2010 at 8:15 pm

    Laura, you made me cry! I remember being in your “little house.” There was always so much love!

  3. 3 Laura's Biggest Fan March 5, 2010 at 11:52 pm

    I love this post. Def one of my favs.

  4. 4 Susan April 7, 2010 at 6:18 pm

    I love this post. I’ve been married a while now and have 2 teen-age kids. We’ve “up-graded” to bigger, better houses several times – but I still dream (literally) about our first house together – (usually, that we’re going to buy it again and I am SOOO happy!). My husband and I, and later, my newborn son – made OUR start in life together there. I’ll celebrate my 20th wedding anniversary in 2 weeks but I’ll NEVER forget that small, “nothing special” house I loved. Enjoy starting out – it’s hard, but it can be truly wonderful too. Thanks for your post – you are a good writer!


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