My house is totally disorganized and my attitude is suffering because of it. Nothing is where it should be, and I don’t know where to start! School takes longer than it should because we spend too much time searching out what we need to just get started. This is giving me anything but a meek and quiet spirit. Help!
You are not alone! After a long winter, we get bit by the spring cleaning bug, but don’t know where to start. I won’t begin to pretend I’m qualified to tell anyone how to clean or get organized. You can read my post Not Your Mother’s “Clean” with some of my experiences, and Help for Bibliomaniacs if you want to get all those books organized. And I can repeat the advice from the numerous organization and cleaning method books I’ve read…
- Only keep the things you use, need, or love
- Have a place for everything and keep everything in its place
- Set manageable goals
- Break up jobs into 15 minute segments
- Don’t put off till tomorrow what you can do today
…but you’ve probably heard them all before.
What I can tell you, though, is that a home is a reflection of the attitude and personality of the homemaker. If your heart is not right, your home won’t be either.
Let’s look at Psalms 51:10:
Three words stand out here – Create, Clean, Renew. Let’s reflect on each and how they apply to our hearts and our homes.
David was asking God, by His creative power, to make in him a new, clean heart. God is creative. From the first act of creation, bringing order out of chaos, to every child, flower, and tree, God pours out creativity. Homemaking, especially in conjunction with homeschooling, exercises a similar kind of creativity. We need to come up with time management tools and storage solutions that non-homeschooling moms have never thought of! Pray, as David did, asking the Lord to create in you a clean heart as well as a workable plan to clean your home. After prayer, create a list of your cleaning priorities.
What does a “clean heart” look like? The word “clean” in this context comes from the Hebrew ṭāhôr meaning physically and morally pure, and purged. A clean heart will be marked by the presence of the fruit of the Spirit: “love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control” (Galatians 5:22-23). Does your heart and home reflect this fruit? Is your disorganization causing a fruit shortage, or is your fruit shortage causing your disorganization? Either way, both heart and home need to be prayerfully purged! Pray for the Lord to increase your fruit as you ask Him to point out areas of your home that need purging – things you are holding on to for the wrong reasons, items that are not edifying or anything that steals joy from you or your children. And start purging!
David asked the Lord to “renew a right spirit” within him. “Renew” is from the Hebrew word ḥādash meaning to rebuild or repair. Along with his desire for a new, clean heart, David also wanted his mental condition (spirit) renovated. Does your mental condition need some repair? Are you harboring any resentment, animosity, or spirit of hopelessness that is hindering you from getting the task at hand completed? Pray as David, asking for mental renewal. Also ask the Lord for direction in deciding what things in your home should be repaired or replaced, and what things should be disposed of.
Here are some Create Clean Renew Journal pages you can use to journal your prayers and goals.
Finally, here is a poem that has blessed me immensely over the years as I struggled with keeping a meek and quite spirit in spite of the messes. May it bless you too.
(Right click and “Save as” for a larger, printable image)