The other day we had some wonderful family time out in a cute little town not far away. We spent most of our afternoon in a cute nursery, which also has a few small museums. But the nursery was by far the best part. It was incredibly beautiful, with blooming flowers, bushes and trees of all kinds set neatly among small fish ponds and comfortable benches. It was a wonderful place to while away an afternoon.
Spencer’s Gardens is a beautiful place. In fact, it’s a peaceful and restful place – but it didn’t get that way by accident. Someone had to work hard to create a peaceful atmosphere, and someone has to continue to put in the hours to keep it that way. A beautiful garden requires work.
In the same way, being a joyful mom requires work. Oh, I know, work is a four-letter word, and we Christians are not to use those! Well, here’s a four-letter word that we need to learn, and use regularly. But when we establish good routines in our daily lives, we make room for peace and joy!
How can we establish good routines?
- First, we need to sit down and write out what we would like our home to be like. Perhaps you have a home that’s all covered in dirty dishes, stinky laundry, and trash. You may wish it were at least somewhat neat! Just write down your goals for your home. Don’t get up and try to clean it all up right now!
- Next, understand that probably part of the problem is that you don’t have routines established for those activities. When I was newly married, I only did the dishes when the counters were completely covered in dirty ones, and there was not even a bowl or spoon left on the cupboard! Now, I do the dishes right away after every meal as a matter of routine, so I save myself having to scrub 3 day-old gunk off my glass pans just so I can make dinner! You will need to do the same thing – develop routines to get these things done.
For some of us, we secretly hope that “someone” will come and help us. Perhaps a friend will bail us out, or our mom, or, most likely, our husband. We hear of husbands who come home from work and then do a bunch of housework and wonder why our hubby doesn’t do that. Well, don’t expect it from him, especially if he’s out working all day. He needs a rest, just like you do.
- Finally, attach those routines to something you always do. For me, it’s a meal. After I eat, I clean up after the meal, put on a load of laundry, and do a quick clean up. It all takes about 15-20 minutes, and the place is set to rights again! You may want to attach your activity to something else, like feeding the baby.
One last word: if you do nothing else, do 1 load of laundry a day, 1 pile of dishes a day, and take out the trash once a day (even if it’s not your job!) Just those three activities will keep you ahead of the ball, and will open up the floodgates for peace in your home!
Being a joyful mom may require a bit of work, but it is much more fun to be able to relax with the kids and frolic with them when you don’t have a mound of laundry threatening to collapse and smother the family! As you develop good routines in your day, you’ll be buying time to rest and relax!
Attack your day – before it attacks you!
Today’s Joyful Mom assignment: sit down and decide on a good routine which includes 1 load of laundry, 1 batch of dishes, and the trash. Be prepared for an amazing transformation of peace!
To Love Honor and Vacuum