I’m half way through the day and I have done two loads of laundry, ironed linens and put them away, and also pressed our clothes for the weekend. Then I got brave and peeked into the clothes hampers in our closets. I saw more dirty clothes wadded and waiting for the the Laundry Lady (that’s me!) to rescue them from the basket and repeat the process of my earlier hours.
It’s true, isn’t it? Laundry never stops. It could be really easy to get cynical and resentful, but as I shared recently in this post, we need to make sure our heart is right in regards to our home. Having a right heart will safeguard us from attitudes that can make us begrudge the work that is so repetitious, but also God-given.
Home began In the Garden of Eden. As a matter of fact, the only thing we have left from the Garden of Eden is the family. What a gift!
And the Lord God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it. Gen 2:15
The word, “dress,” literally means to work it; for though a paradise, the garden still had to be tilled and planted. Seeds needed to be sown. and the cultivated plots kept in order; but all this really added to Adam’s happiness, because Adam hadn’t sinned yet and responded willingly to the husbandman’s care.
“To keep it.” The animals weren’t all so peaceful and domesticated that Adam did not need to fence his garden against their plundering. Ever had deer eat your garden?!
God made the family – Adam and Eve. He provided the place for them to live, and also gave them the responsibility of caring for it. They were to WORK. Work was not a result of sin. Sometimes we treat it as though it is a curse, but work is a blessing. Work is necessary in order to keep a home a suitable place to live. Someone needs to oversee that the work is done – they need to manage it all.
As the wife, it is our responsibility to be the manager – keep the order. That involves training our children to help, but we are to be busy managing the home so that those that live there can serve God best. If our home is only confusion, we will be hindered in serving God or doing what he calls us to do.
But how do we get it all done? Let’s look to the practical side of this management.
What kind of atmosphere do you want it to have?
None of that can happen if it’s mayhem.
In her book, A Woman After God’s Own Heart, Elizabeth George gives a checklist for managing your time and your home. In today’s post, we’ll just elaborate on the area of laundry. I hope to give you some practical help here!
1. Plan! Nothing grand just happens – you have to plan. The more detail the better – the more you’ll get done.
A goal without a plan is just a wish.
Do you have goals for your home, or are they only wishes? We plan our work, and then we work our plan. How do we plan?
- If you don’t have some type of daily planning book, get one. It can be a spiral notebook or a formatted daily planner. If you use a plain notebook, list the days of the week on the page.
- You will plan in the three areas – Maytag (Laundry), Messes (House cleaning) and Meals.
- Write down the major things you want to accomplish each day under each category.
- When the task is finished, check it off.
- Stay focused on your list and don’t get sidetracked by other chores. The list will help you do that!
Let’s start today with how you can plan for getting the laundry done
Plan when will you do the laundry. Will you do one load each morning? Will you designate one day to do it all for the week?
Plan when you will fold the clothes. Note that if you leave the clothes in the dryer for hours after they’re dry, they will wrinkle. Help yourself by setting a goal to get to them as quickly as you can. This will keep your family from searching for their clean clothes and finding them still in the dryer, or spilled out on the living room couch.
Plan when you will put the clothes away, or who will put them away. Will you take each family member’s clothes to their bedroom? Will they each find their pile and put them where they belong?
Plan to teach your children to help. When they’re little they can help you sort. Folding wash cloths and sorting socks is another task they can do. As they grow older, make them more and more responsible for their own clothes. I know a mom who taught her girls to do their own laundry by the time they were ten years old. #smartmom
Whatever your Maytag goals are, keep moving forward and don’t check that chore off your list until it’s all been folded and put away. Seeing that chore on your plan will remind you that it still needs to be tossed into the dryer, or that it’s ready to be folded and put away.
Plan your work and work your plan.
Don’t just wish you could get caught up on the laundry – have a goal AND a plan about how you’re going to tackle it. As with all of life, ask the Lord to help you have the right attitude and to do even the laundry for His glory. He gave you that family who dirties up all those clothes. If we could think of our laundry as a blessing because it represents the people who live there, would we have a better attitude? Pretty sure so.
Refresh your Maytag responsibilities and your attitude about it.