It all started with my God-given personality. By nature I’m a “recreator,” an enjoyer of free time; in fact, I need down time in my life, just to relax and do nothing. I like to do fun stuff and I don’t like to do not fun stuff. I’m not a list-maker, a planner, or an organizer.
Although I was always successful in school, even earning a Master’s degree, I was the type who had papers sticking wildly out of every book. No plan of attack, no real concern about any assignment before the due date loomed immediately close, standing over me like a wicked giant in some fairy tale.
And, I married an organized, shirts-must-be-arranged-by-season-in-the-closet-type fella. He adores lists, plans of action, resolutions, sweeping under furniture, organizing and re-organizing the garage.
And then I had children. Three of them. And before long my whole life seemed like a battle against the clutter and whirlwind of kid stuff that attacked every room of the house.
And then I started a blog. And, blogging takes so much more time that you might realize.
And suddenly I had a whopping list of reasons why I couldn’t get things accomplished around here.
One day I woke up and realized that I was stressed out about the chaotic state of my life. There was no relaxation, EVER. But, it wasn’t because I never sat around. It was because I was sitting around too much. I was avoiding what I didn’t want to do, and it was making me miserable.
I believed the lie that I am not cut out to be a housewife. But, the truth is that I had let the sin of sloth scramble my life in the smallest ways, and the result was that I felt like a failure.
I could give you my huge list of excuses for why I wasn’t being an effective manager of my house. Some are legitimate. Some have to do with me fighting against my disorganized nature. But, my main issue is that I allowed laziness (although I hate to even type that word), to keep me from doing what I needed to do. And, not only was my poor husband paying for it, so were my children.
When I’m slothful it affects my family in different ways:
1. We can’t relax when we’re at home. If things are a mess, if everything is out of order and out of control, we are only staying here and not really living here. Our home should be a sanctuary, a pleasant escape from a harsh world.
2. I don’t feel like I have play time with the kids. When I constantly feel the weight of all that’s un-done, it’s hard to say yes when the kids want to play. I like to have things enough in order so that I can play with no guilt or stress.
3. I’m short with the kids. When things haven’t been properly taken care of at home, getting ready to leave here with three kids is a disaster. I am likely to be annoyed and short with them because of my lack of preparedness. I’ve spent many a Sunday morning drive to church trying to change my attitude before I walk through the door.
I am in no way suggesting that homes with children should be spotless or that we should be slaves to housework. But, I have discovered in my own life that if we want to enjoy being at home, there are certain things that have to be taken care of, despite how I feel about doing those things.
Slothfulness snuck up on me through these ten years of being home with kids. But, it’s no way to live. Jesus said that He came so that we might have abundant life. A big part of that spiritually plentiful life is doing everything we do like we’re doing it for Him.
Even if what we do is keeping clean underwear in dresser drawers. It matters more than you think.