I Live in a Glass House

I live in a glass house . . . and so do you. 

Hang around pastors’ wives very long, and inevitably someone will make a comment about how hard it is to live in a “glass house.” She’s commenting on how difficult it is to live up to the higher standard of behavior a church or community expects from its spiritual leader and his family. 

I hate to tell you, but it’s not just the pastor and his family who live in a glass house. If you’re a Christian, you do, too. 

And it’s not just the community who’s watching you. 

It’s God. 

Proverbs 5:21 tells us,” a man's ways are in full view of the LORD, and he examines all his paths.”

Proverbs 15:3 echoes the fact: “The eyes of the LORD are everywhere, keeping watch on the wicked and the good.” While it’s ok to care what others think of our behavior, what really matters is what God thinks about it. Leviticus 19:2 tells us that we should “be holy, for the Lord your God is holy.”



How in the world am I going to live in a glass house with the holy, pure, spotless, perfect Lord of the universe peering down on me through my glass ceiling? 

This is worse than Santa Claus! Remember “He sees you when you’re sleeping. He knows when you’re awake. He knows if you’ve been bad or good, so be good for goodness sake”? 

Thankfully, there’s hope: 

#1 – God wants us to be holy because it’s good for his reputation (after all, he’s our father, and kids should never bring shame on their parents). It’s also good for me. If we obey God’s instructions for righteous living, our lives will be better, cleaner, happier, safer, healthier, and more fulfilled. 

#2 – God knows we’re frail. “As a father has compassion on his children, so the LORD has compassion on those who fear him; for he knows how we are formed, he remembers that we are dust” (Psalm 103:13-14).

#3 –He’s given us the power to be holy. And the good news is, it’s not a matter of trying, failing, trying harder, and failing again, in a never-ending cycle of frustration. Philippians 2:13 reminds us that “it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purpose.” As we yield ourselves to God and feed our spirits, letting the Word of Christ dwell in us richly (Colossians 3:16), God begins to change, mature, and make us holy. 

#4 – It’s God’s responsibility to grow us. Philippians 1:6 reminds us that “he (God) who began a good work in you will be faithful to complete it.” This means we don’t have to sweat to make it happen any more than a peach tree has to strain to bring forth fruit. Fruit comes as the tree matures. 

So welcome to the glass house. It’s a good place to live with God watching over us. 

How have you seen God grow you in certain areas of your life? I'd love to hear your story. Leave a comment below and join the conversation. If you're reading via email, CLICK HERE to leave a comment.

If you liked this post, you might enjoy: "Obedience is in the small things."



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  1. A really thought provoking post. Sometimes we tend to forget that God is watching our every move and also sees our motives and heart's desires. However, I must say as a missionary/pastor/s wife that you do feel more carefully watched as a spiritual leader's wife. This is not something to complain about, though. Pastors and missionary wives should take that as an honor and strive to be the best example possible. It's not easy being watched by other people, but it does keep you on your toes!
    Thanks for taking the time to write something worth reading:) Not all blog posts are that!
    Visiting from Pint-sized Treasures

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  3. I remember just a few days after my husband became a pastor someone asked me "So, what's it like living in a glass house?" and I had no idea what they were talking about, lol! I'd never heard the term.

    I love that you shared this though. I like to tell people that I am just that, the pastor's WIFE and that we all have gifts and responsibilities that God has given us to minister within the church and with out, and that mine doesn't make me any more special than theirs.

    But it does give me opportunities to minister in ways that others often can't as I am more privy to some confidential information that others will share with their pastor's wives or their pastors.

    People do watch their pastor and his family. But I like to think that they do it out of love. But the world is watching us Christians, as you said and we need to see that we reflect our Father and not ourselves, and we can only do that if we lean into Him on a daily basis.

    Thanks so much for linking up to "Making Your Home Sing Monday" linky party today! ;)

  4. Growing up, we lived right next to the church with walls paper thin because it was Hawaii and didn't get cold. There was no insulation from our neighbor a few feet away or the person walking down the street. I remember being painfully aware that conversations could be heard, and some th