Clean House Clean Heart

Confessions of a Homemaker…
“This really sucks!” I say with joy as I push my new vacuum around the floor.  It is a pun that I learned from my dad when I was a child to refer to the suction of [easyazon_link identifier=”B01KKCI9GE” locale=”US” tag=”keepofthehome-20″]the vacuum[/easyazon_link].  I get to clean my home.  While others complain, I rejoice because I love seeing dirt being sucked up and off my floors.  When I signed up for this gig (the wife gig), how could I possibly know what a joy it would actually be to serve Christ in my home.

When I was a child, cleaning was a burden.  I felt the nagging of my parents to get me off whatever I wanted to do, to do the work that was expected of me.  I did the work well.  Sometimes the work felt freeing, but I was working under a task master.  I hated to be told what to do.  There was a satisfaction for completing my job and doing it well.  I knew that the cleaning I was doing was getting me closer to my goal which was to do what I wanted to do all along.  Work was in the way of freedom.  Each day would bring another burden and another hurdle to jump.  I never felt true freedom.

I would shove my dirt and mess in areas that were hidden from the human eye and that of the parent.  I could hide lumps of papers, sweep dirt under the rugs, and make my room look as though it was put together properly.  People could walk past my room and it would look orderly.  My mother would open the drawer to find my mess and she would plop it all back on the floor and tell me it had better get sorted correctly.  I could not hide from mom.  She knew I was a hoarder and a surface cleaner.

I loved to surprise mom.  When she was not expecting or telling me to clean, I would love to clean for her so that when she arrived home, she could praise me. I was doing something that showed that I loved her with a willingness in my heart.  God loves a cheerful giver.

When I got married, my husband married my messes.  I struggled to find joy in cleaning.  The tendency to stuff things out of sight was definitely still an issue.  I never knew where anything was and I lived in a state of chaos.  It was a burden to me because I knew that, behind the closed doors of closets or kitchen cupboards, it was a terrible mess.  As I began to chip away at each area that needed cleaning, I found that it was freeing.  I found true joy.  In fact, I love cleaning.  It is no longer a burden to me but a strong JOY.  While others might say the same phrase (which I won’t repeat if it is used as a vulgar phrase) because they hate the burden of keeping their home, I say with a big smile on my face, “This really sucks!” as I see the floors becoming cleaner by the suction of this amazing vacuum.  Just as I enjoy cleaning up my home, I see God enjoying cleaning up our lives.  He shines the light into our hearts and exposes all the dirt, and lovingly washes us clean again.

“Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me.”
Psalm 51:10

The picture of salvation through the eyes of a homemaker…

Before we knew Jesus, we worked.  Like obeying the law.  We saw God as a taskmaster who was going to punish us for not doing our work.  The work was a burden.  We hid our messes and tried to make ourselves look clean from the outside.  We worked to be good.  We struggled to get the job done so we could please God and earn a spot in heaven.  We knew we could never be good enough and our burden just became heavier each day until we broke.  Once we see our messes for what they truly are and that our work will never be finished because there is no way we could finish a job that was not ours to begin with, we find true salvation.

When we realize only Christ could finish the job, we cease from our work.  He stretched out his arms and said “It is finished”.  As we trust in His work, the burden we once felt becomes a joy.  We no longer make God our debtor, thinking he owes us for the good we have done, we are so thankful, so humble for the price he paid for our souls, that we offer him all that we are.  We now find the work freeing.  It is easy to do something when there is no expectation.  Just like when I was a little girl, I wanted to clean for my mother when she did not ask because I loved her.  My mother always appreciated it when I would do nice things for her when she least expected it.  My father in heaven rejoices when I willingly serve him out of a pure heart of thanksgiving because I love him back.  For, He first loved me!  

Cleaning my home is a joy!  It is a privilege.  It is my calling.  I can be busy cleaning, serving, cooking, and taking care of my family and I am truly doing something with purpose.  It is my ministry.  It is as freeing to me as dancing in the sunshine.  I am honoring God when I clean my home.

Maybe you feel the burden.  You might live in a mess because you were never taught. Your marriage might be a mess.  You feel like life is a burden.  It is hard right now for you because you have not found the secret to joy.  Maybe you are hiding from God.  You might be grumbling about your lot in life because you don’t know how to be happy.  You think you might be happy if this or that worked out.  If only you could have more money, a prettier home, that homestead you dream of, better looks, a sweeter husband, sweeter kids, or maybe a thinner waistline.  Who knows what you are seeking after, except you and God who knows your heart.  All I know is that there is so much to be thankful for and finding joy in vacuuming my floor, serving my family is truly a gift to me.  I know what it is to be in your spot.  I have been there, feeling so down and so burdened by life.  Little by little I started to pick up the tools God gave me to overcome.  I started to allow Christ to be my source of joy.  I allowed his work on the cross to be enough.

Here is the secret…

Jesus is enough for YOU.  His finished work at the cross and the eternal gift you get from believing is sufficient for ALL.  It is FREE.  It is SIMPLE.

Life is like a cake.  Imagine Jesus. If he is the cake, you already have something sweet.  Everything else in life, to me, is the icing on the cake.  I can take it or leave it.  Having Jesus is the cake of life.  It keeps us fed.  Anything above that just makes it sweeter.

It is fun to serve God.  I love it.  I love that I never have to leave my home to serve Jesus.  I can keep my doors open for others to come and bask in the love that Jesus gave me to pour out to others.  It is fun to cheer people up by giving them a cup of tea.  Wow.  I can pour a cup of tea, give my neighbor a warm hug and I am doing the will of God?  Yes.  I can dust my hutch and serve God? You bet!  What a blessing to be a humble homemaker!  I pray you find this message an encouragement, where ever you are in your journey today.

Quit working because you have to, work because it is a joy to serve Jesus.  It is a matter of perspective and a matter of willingly choosing to be joyful in all you do.

Please leave a comment if this post spoke to your heart.  I would love to hear from you.  I love you all!  Have a blessed day!

~Erin

 

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22 thoughts on “Clean House Clean Heart”

  1. Excellent! So much wisdom here:)
    I must ask you ( my daughter has been online trying to find something similiar)
    Would you share where you got your dress in the picture? ( Blue)
    God bless!!
    Mrs.O

    1. I just looked online myself and could only find a XL on a site that was for used clothing. I found this gem at ROSS dress for LESS store. They sell these type of dresses all the time. They are always less than $15 which makes them very affordable. They wash so nice, never wrinkle, and it feels like you are wearing a comfy nightgown it is so comfortable. You can layer leggings under for cooler weather and boots with a sweater and scarf. On hot days this is the most cool, breathable dress. It dries fast so if you happen to be a walk and live by the creek like I do, I can pop into the water for a swim and by the time I get home the dress is dry and functional. So amazing. Sami and Jo is the brand. I wish I could be a sales person for them, because they are my favorite dresses. I would own a store just selling them because I love them THAT much. I hope you can find the Ross store near you and pick one like this up. They have lots of colors and styles, so have Fun!
      Love, Erin

      1. Can you tell us where you found the XL? We certainly don’t mind used, we’re Goodwill shoppers;)
        I can always alter, if needed.
        Thanks!!

  2. I like cleaning my house more each day! I am so thankful I am able to stay home and do the house work. I do not miss the hustle and bustle of tge jobs I once held down. I use to complain a lot about not getting any help from my husband or the kids. The Lord has helped change my attitude my heart and home. It didn’t happen overnight but the more I have sought and cried out to him he has taken a lazy complaing woman and is making me complete in him. Organizing and planning is a big key he has helped me in. I did not train my kids to consistently help with chores so it was a burden for me. I am now consistent and they are helping me a lot more. Keeping them active and smiling at them more has Also made such a difference. We have days that things don’t always go as planned and we fail sometimes but I look to the Lord to help me and us and he picks us up again and we keep on trying. Good post Erin and good advice!

  3. Dori Umphreys

    Thank you for posting this its very encouraging to me! I think I’m subscribed to your emails already but I’ll have to check for sure to make sure I don’t miss anything. Have a beautiful day my friend!!!

    1. Thank you so much, Dori! It is great to have you here on the blog! I am always so encouraged by you! Looking forward to this journey of be a keeper of the home with you!

  4. Thank you, Erin! I’ll be printing this one off to read over and over. This is an area I really struggle in. I’m a slob and very much a surface cleaner. I’ve worked hard to train myself to be more neat and tidy, but now that I’m married, my husband is even more of a slob than I am and does not clean up his messes, period. And I have a baby and a two year old following me around making new disasters faster than I can clean them up. I have ongoing health problems that leave me with no energy, and I run a business and a farm by myself. My husband works a very demanding job and doesn’t have much left when he is home. We never seem to have enough to pay our bills (I have a LOT of medical bills and my husband has had two serious accidents in the past three years), so I always feel I have to work harder and harder, which means my house is messier and messier, so I get grumpier and grumpier. Anyway thank you for the encouragement; I really do appreciate it!

    1. Erin Harrison

      Kate, your words are the same as my words were early in my marriage so you can take hope that things will turn around as you have a willingness to grow in that area. I know I did. God is faithful to those that seek him and gives abundantly to those that ask! I will pray for you, because the path you are on is a burden for you, but I know as you cast your burdens on Jesus he is faithful to carry you through. Love to you!

    1. Erin Harrison

      Aww, Jennifer, that is so sweet of you! I am a work in progress, but ever so thankful for each new day the Lord gives and I praise him for all that he teaches me each day. My cup runs over indeed!

  5. Lisaanne mclouth

    Thank you for this sweet reminder. I have always “hated” cleaning. This puts it in a different perspective!

  6. I loved all of this. You are truly a blessing to me & others. I am so thankful for you and your witness. I can’t wait for more. Have a wonderful day 😃

    1. Thank you so much, Brenda for the encouraging words! You are a great cleaning friend of mine, I can’t wait to share lots more in the future!

  7. “Cleaning my home is a joy! It is a privilege. It is my calling. I can be busy cleaning, serving, cooking, and taking care of my family and I am truly doing something with purpose. It is my ministry. It is as freeing to me as dancing in the sunshine. I am honoring God when I clean my home.”

    I loved this, Erin! When we realize that keeping our homes clean and caring for our families are exactly what the Lord has called us to do, we can take joy in it and do it all as unto the Lord.

    1. So true, Lori, my sister in Christ. I just explode with joy in this amazing ministry to my home. So easy. So freeing! Love you friend!

  8. Great perspective and reminder… I love my home to be clean but sometimes lose sight of the joy in serving my husband and family. The pity party of “I’m the family maid” or “they all take advantage of my cleaning abilities” takes over and it’s no longer an act of love… what good is a clean home where no joy or peace abides? It’s no longer a clean home – it’s a clean house.

    1. Erin Harrison

      That is a great perspective, Nettie! I hear you. I actually love cleaning so much I wish I could do it all myself, but one of my struggles is delegation. I know it is good for the others who live here to participate. Then my role goes from fun, Jesus loving, cleaning queen, to task master, LOL. As moms and wives, we have to find creative ways to enjoy serving but not enabling others to be ungrateful along the way and teach them to enjoy helping.

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