About the Author

Jen encourages women to embrace both the beauty and bedlam of their everyday lives at BeautyandBedlam.com. A popular speaker, worship leader, and author of Just Open the Door: How One Invitation Can Change a Generation, Jen lives in North Carolina with her husband, five children, and a sofa for anyone...

Recent Posts

Reader Interactions

Comments

  1. Thank you for this post! I am guilty of being ashamed to invite guests into my home because I’m afraid of being judged that it’s not fancy enough. There are definitely some “tacky” floors here! But they also reflect the love and life that has gone through this house. 🙂

  2. Where is the “like button”? This is great! Thanks for the smile! We are in a new home (again… Life of a “I’m being transferred again” family)….but as a kid I remember sitting at home remembering the oops we made and even hearing my grandmother say to my mom “see that….remember when…..” And the giggles it brought on. Happy times. Thanks!

  3. Jennifer,
    I am reminded, by your story, of a wise woman who once explained the difference between “entertaining” and “hospitality” to me. Entertaining focuses on the person doing the hosting (come see my pristine house with lovely hardwood floors). Hospitality focuses on the person being hosted (come on in; pull up a chair; let me get you a cup of coffee, and don’t worry if you spill some on my tacky floor!). Obviously you have a home filled with hospitality! Wonderful post!
    Blessings,
    Bev

    • Thank you , Bev – we are a home that desires each person that comes through the to have that “pull up a chair feeling.” When that woman spilled her coffee, she was mortified and I honestly could say to her, really, it’s just no big deal.

  4. A home is where life is lived and wear and tear are signs of life, not a showroom! Your home sounds full of life and love and blessings!

  5. Jennifer. What a nice little piece of wisdom here. We’ve grown from the Velveteen Rabbit to the Tacky Floor. The difference is always in the love. He loved us when we were unlovely. I wonder what memories He sees in the broken places of our heart? I hope He see our smiles and open arms as He touches those places with His love. Thanks for such a beautiful message. I look forward to meeting you someday. Will you be at Allume this year? If so I will look for you.

  6. Forget the tacky floors and do what you are doing a good job of–living and enjoying the joy of life. The time will come soon enough–when the floors will be the latest and greatest–and so clean you can eat off them–but with that comes the quietness of an empty nest. For this season—you are doing the right thing.

  7. Jen,I absolutely love this. I am going to look at our floors in a whole new light.

    Thank-you,

    Penny

  8. Oh! This made me cry! Good tears:)! Still in tears as I type – Thank you Lord for our tacky floors! Thank you Lord for being with us through it all! Thank you sister for sharing this:)!Sending you and your family big hugs:)! Thanks again for sharing.. Thank you Lord!!!

  9. My tacky floors are just starting to be redone after 26 years. I’m hoping for grandkids to break in the newly refinished wood and stretched carpets!! Another cycle of memories coming…

  10. Although my floors aren’t tacky, I have longed for several years to move into a home which requires less maintenance. My cozy, warm, log home holds many memories also. We renewed our broken relationship here. We raised our children into adulthood here. We entertained young people whom our daughter had a heart to “bring to Jesus”, here. And now , we are helping nurture grandchildren, so mom and dad can have time together, here. Thank you for reminding me of the stories my home holds.

  11. Thank you, thank you!..your post brought me to tears! I have been troubled with my “tacky” floors. But you are so right… a sign of a lot of living, a lot of loving,a lot of memories.

  12. We lived for years in 1000 square feet with 4 children. Their friends came through the house in great numbers. I often felt embarrassed about the shabbiness, but it never seemed to bother all those boys who ate biscuits and drank gallons of iced tea. We were able to move to a larger, nicer house, but I took those lessons with me. No concern about people making messes, an open door and plenty of food draw people in and make it possible to live in vibrant, life-giving community that affirms people and allows them to find acceptance and healing. So, enjoy the floors/memories and welcome life.

  13. You hit the nail on the head… floors, we just walk on them. What matters is WHO walks on them and how they are greeted, welcomed, loved, encouraged.

  14. Jennifer,

    You nailed it exactly! God would love to come into your home–tacky floors and all. He never cared how things looked on the outside–it was what’s on the inside that matters to Him. 🙂 You have a great perspective on a Christian life well lived with plenty of hospitality & love!

    Thanks for a great perspective and post!!

  15. We live in a 130 year old farmhouse that we love, but is in constant renovation. Our families and friends love to visit and enjoy bonfires and gatherings because what is important is sharing together and not worrying if something spills. It makes for a relaxed home and my opinion is that if you are coming to visit my home, don’t bother, but if you are coming to visit me, come on over!

  16. Thank you soo much….I have a tacky bathroom upstairs which is the only shower for family , friends and over night guests. Great reminder of all the “refreshing and renewing” that has taken place there !

  17. Thank you for this, am reminded that God looks at the heart not the tacky floor and He loves what He sees. Our visitors also look at the heart of our home and love to see the generous welcome we extend

  18. 13 years of three boys and a dog have certainly left us with tacky floors. What a blessing! Thanks for the reminder. 🙂

  19. Jen, this post kinda made me laugh because I spent hours in your home and never once noticed “tacky floors”. Your home screams “love”!

  20. Jennifer!

    I’m crying with the good-bye of a family member as I open my emails and I found your Tacky Floor message. I thank God for my ragged carpet. Many steps it has held including the paramedics taking my husband away on February of 2012. It’s mine for now. I thank heavens for allowing me to drag myself on days that are not so pleasant and to share and enjoy on other times when His joy is more tangible to me. Love you.

  21. This is too funny. I was thinking this was going to be a post on what to do when you spill an entire 2 liter bottle of pop on the kitchen floor. Not that anyone around here has ever done that. Ok, maybe that once. Thanks for the unexpected remininscences.

  22. My house! We have for a solid year been living in my parents guest house. We moved across the state for my husbands job, our house is still forsale in former town I cry every day about it but know I must wait
    On The Lord

  23. I love my laminate HARD good quality that we got because friends overbought and sold to us for so reasonable. Our two year old grandson plays blocks. I don’t worry when they tumble. I’m disabled and have needed food. I love having a solid surface for this family of four children from 18 mos. to nine years to each have a space to play– doing a puzzle, throwing a ball, building with magn-tiles! None of this would have been done on my old flooring. Another brought her two year old who likes to play in the tiny hallway where the linen closet is and the toys are in tubs that just slide out. Oh such fun to watch all these little ones have fun on my floor! And my greatest reward last Sunday? A little three year old cried when he had to go home. I’m so very blessed to have no tripping hazards. And easy to maintain flooring that’s great for new fun times already happening on these floors 🙂

  24. I loved your message about “tacky” floors. Sound like there has been, and will be, a lot of living and loving in your home. I applaud your decision to always pay cash. We are in debt up to our eyeballs, and each time we say no to credit we are triumphant. So I guess it’s time to thank God for my old gray carpet, that was here when we arrived 6 years ago, andI can only guess how long it was here before we arrived. It keeps us warm in the winter and makes our house cozy. So thankful for our little home and for the ability to buy our first home in all of our married life (35 years!). After living in one home, raising our two sons, leaving memories behind with out old home, not once have we felt disoriented or that we didn’t belong here. We both have always felt, since we moved in, that this was our home. Amazing, and a miracle in itself. Thank you God for preparing a place for us!

  25. I sway between loving my ‘tacky’ garden, ‘tacky’ kitchen, ‘tacky’ bathroom and wishing I could just change everything and make it brand new. After reading your post, I can sit firmly in the love that I feel for my home despite its tackiness. I can remember that I invite people into my home to offer them hospitality, love and togetherness rather than spotless and brand new surroundings. Thank you for the reminder.

  26. Thanks so much for your post! When I read, “Sometimes, all we need is a perspective change and this time the Lord used a seemingly insignificant and superficial disappointment to remind us of His goodness.” tears began to flow. Yesterday I participated in a church yard sale. I had worked hard for two weeks gathering “treasures” to sell to make some extra money. I know I heard the voice of God to participate in this endeavor. It was full of the right stuff: uncluttering our “tacky” home, sharing our abundance with those less fortunate perhaps and making money to boot. However at the end of that long, hot day, I only made $11.25. I kept reminding myself that all of the good stuff still happened, I uncluttered a bit, I shared out abundance and I made some money. So this superficial disappointment is helping me to learn to be content in all things. Thanks again!

  27. What a beautiful way to think about things. It was nice to read this before starting my Sunday. Thanks for sharing

  28. I am not a mum, but I live with my mum in the home we moved to 23 years ago. All the flooring, carpets apart from the one in the front room, and attic room, are what was here when we arrived in 1990. The kitchen tiles are tacky, dangerous when wet, so we brought two commercial supermarket style rugs which get washed and dried during hot sunny weather each year. But it is home and God planted us here, that is what matters, and we love the place it is because of the garden. So yes our floors could be seen as tacky, but life both sad and happy has been lived on those floors.

  29. Since most of our furniture is either hand me down, or mismatched, this post really encouraged me. We have five children and the lesson you shared here is one that I have tried to teach my chilren also. (Well, two lessons really.) First, if you really want something, save up for it and pay cash. Second, your value and self worth is not tied to the stuff you own. Focus instead on the blessings and memories that have been made with our family here in this home.

  30. My 9 year old brother recently dumped a newly-loaded plate of spaghetti onto the area rug below the dining room table during supper. My dad was quick to assure him it was okay, an accident, and he got down on his knees to wipe the sauce off of the carpet.

    There is a giant nasty-looking splatter on the carpet; we’ll probably get a new one soon (this wasn’t the first stain), but it is a reminder of how far our family has come over the years. There was no “why weren’t you being more careful” or “come on, that’s what happens when you’re rushing or being foolish.” There was only grace and love and shame-absent care.

  31. Your messages never cease to inspire. You are a generation younger that me yet you are wise beyond measure. I always take something from your posts. I hope you will consider compiling your messages in a book. What a beautiful bridal or baby shower or any occasion gift!
    Flooring: such a simple object yet such a profound message to share. Thank you for your gentle and gracious spirit in reminding us all of the beauty and perfection in the imperfect – just like us!

  32. I so appreciate and relate to your post! We’ve been saying for years and years that we will not replace our flooring until the kids are older and the dog has died. This past week we said goodbye to our dog of fourteen years. My oldest asked when we are going to replace the carpets. We informed her that it costs money and it won’t be today. As I sit here, I miss our dog. I think of all the people we invite into our home. Just this past weekend a little boy entertained himself with moon dough while us adults talked. When it was time for our company to go home, the floor was covered in moon dough. I said it didn’t matter. It doesn’t. Telling my friend it vacuums right up, I did so. My carpet is still a little slippery from the sandy substance. Yet I love that friends can be comfortable letting their kids play in our home because I don’t have to be worried about material things like flooring. I tell myself over and over again that there are people in this world whose floors truly are dirt. It doesn’t matter than mine feel dirty to me. Your post was awesome. I wish I could articulate it all that well!

  33. I love this! Just today I was explaining to a weekend guest that I recently hurt my back and hadn’t been able to clean as well as I prefer for company. He replied that my home’s “lived-in look” made him feel comfortable! I laughed and laughed again when I read your post. I guess I’m a member of the tacky club too. 🙂 And I’m okay with that. Thanks for the lovely reminder, Jen!

  34. This is a beautifully written reflection, thank you for sharing this with us today. I pray you get a new floor soon 🙂