It was several years ago, early evening, on a Saturday night. I walked
into the laundry room on the laundry, in the laundry room. It had been a solid three days since I’d washed any clothes. All day shopping on day one, the funeral on day two, and several families coming for a get-together we’d been planning for weeks on day three. With all of that, and everything else we had going on at home, laundry had been last on my list.
Still, I braved my way to the washer and dryer. One of the older girls had washed and dried a few loads (thank you!) so it was waiting there on top of the dryer.
I had every intention of getting some of it taken care of, but the sheer volume of it all just made me want to throw in the towel (pun intended) on the whole washing-drying-folding undertaking. It was simply too much.
Dealing With: “It’s Too Much”
With my head resting on a laundry basket overflowing with clean clothes, I sighed. The temptation to turn and walk out, leaving that burden behind me was strong. But then what? If I’d just left it there, what would I (what should I) expect to find when I returned again that night or the next morning? Wisdom and reality said it would just get worse, not better.
So with that thought I balanced the warm, dry clothes higher on the existing pile of clean clothes. I switched the wet clothes from the washer to the dryer and started another load in washer. I was making progress.
By the time I went to bed I’d washed and dried at least 3 loads. Sunday morning we woke up to clean clothes for church, and clean bath towels. Had I given into the temptation to being overwhelmed by 3 days worth of dirty clothes, today I would have 5 days worth of dirty clothes.
It’s A Mindset
So much of how we react to circumstances, to life in general, is our mindset. It’s how we think about what’s going on around us. Romans 12:2 says we need to renew our minds:
Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind…”
The work we were given to do was bestowed upon us prior to the fall. For us as wives, we have a man to help; to cook for, to clean for, to wash clothes for. Yes, marriage is much more than just that, but those duties are an aspect of it. Making sure that man of ours has a clean towel to use after his morning shower and clean socks to put on each day is our duty. We won’t perform any duty of ours, even half way joyfully, if we aren’t thinking about our chores in a righteous way.
So, to encourage you, which is always my goal… when a particular facet of homemaking is beginning to feel overwhelming to you, consider your mindset. Ask yourself why it’s such a burden. For me, and in regards to the laundry the other day, I began to feel overwhelmed because there was just so much and I knew how much time it was going to take to get it put away.
What moved me to action was prioritizing my time to allow me to tackle laundry, realizing I would be making it harder on myself if I did nothing right then, and knowing it was work that LORD had set before me. Laundry is one side (of the many sides) of homemaking.
Looking to learn more about Biblical homemaking? Look into the Elements of Christian Homemaking Course, enrollment is open this week only:
Jennifer, I SO needed this today! If you blink, things can get out of control. We have lots of garden produce coming in and before i know it, it is in every nook and cranny! I was gone half a day yesterday and feel like I didn’t know where to start when I got home. You’re blog is one of the few that gives encouragement through what I NEED to hear, not just what I want to hear. Thanks!
Praise God for a bountiful garden! I know how fast they can grow, even overnight 🙂
I am delighted you found encouragement today!!
I find that just doing one thing to get things started snowballs into getting it all done. Today I thought of not making the bed, just for a second, then it seemed like a strenuous idea when I imagined doing it. Then I started doing it, forgot about the idea of not doing it, got into it, made it look nice, then before I knew it was putting away the toddler’s and baby’s laundry and making the room look just right. I felt GOOD at the end of it. Why the struggle to begin? I think it was because I was a little discouraged, but then as I started doing it and even before (which was when I got motivated) I thought, “I’m doing this because I trust God. I’m not going to let discouragement dominate. I’m making the bed and making it look nice because I have hope in God!” The end result was that after accomplishing those morning goals in a timely way and with the room all nice the way it should be, I was actually encouraged going forward to the next thing in another room.