Household Sanctification: The Work is Never Done
Would you like to know how to make time for your kids and get all of your housework done?
Would you like to know how to never get behind on the dishes?
Would you like the secret to never losing your temper with the kids, or letting the stress pile up?
Would you like to know how it feels to put up that last piece of laundry?
Would you like to know what it feels like for everyone in your household to be happy with the job that your doing?
Seriously, please don’t come here looking for those answers. I will only disappoint you.
But take comfort in the fact that we all empathize with your distress. We all know that dream that drives you-
-that perfectly clean house with all those tidy drawers with that nice soapy-clean smell…what is that, tide?
The sparkle coming off those dreamy counter-tops is all but blinding.
“How do you do it all?” Your dream-neighbor asks you. “And those children! So well behaved…“
“Well, you know that ole Proverbs 31 woman“, you reply, “her lamp does not go out at night!“
Did I lose you?
Come back from dream land…hey!
But isn’t this a universal frustration?
And not an entirely sinful dream to have- though it can become an idol.
I find myself exhausted, catatonic, and drooling by 9:00 every night. Looking around my living room I think, I wonder what I did today?
There are folded clothes piled to the ceiling on the back of the couch, the kid-sized puddle next to the front door is stagnant, ten pairs of shoes are all thrown across the floor of the hallway…who lives here, a spider family? And let’s not even mention the monstrous pile of dishes overflowing from the sink. The bathroom smells like tee-tee, and no kidding- there is actually chocolate pudding dripping off the dining room wall. What on earth did I do today? One glance in the mirror tells me I didn’t spend all day primping…or five minutes, for that matter. Did I even shower today? Nah, I couldn’t have…I wore these clothes yesterday, too. So what did I do? I’m exhausted. And I have absolutely nothing to show for all of my hard labor.
So I sit. And I dream. And I might cry a little.
And then I go, dutifully, and wipe the chocolate pudding off the walls.
Sometimes, our walk with the Lord feels the same way, doesn’t it?
There is no completed check list to look at and feel good about. There’s always some big mess of sin needing to be cleaned up- always a hamper of metaphorical dirty laundry hiding in a dark forgotten closet. Sometimes it seems like, just as you have cleaned and dressed your wounds from your last war with sin, you squint your tired eyes to see another raging battle moving in.
And sometimes, we can get very discouraged with our lack of obvious progress.
I’m right here on the war-front with you, but I want to encourage you- please, when you feel that way, take a minute and remember,
That though you stand, helpless, small, and tired at the very bottom of this mountain, be steady. Take a breath. Take a moment.
The ordinary moments of your life are orchestrated by a very extraordinary God, and those dark circles under your eyes aren’t just a sign of age or lack of sleep…they’re marks of a pilgrimage- a long and treacherous journey through womanhood, motherhood, and servanthood in the Kingdom of God.
And that, my friend, is something to feel good about.