Not what you expected in the middle of a series that is completely against perfectionism, is it? Yet I think it’s important to share why I do keep my house picked up and why I don’t. We’re letting go of perfect here, but that doesn’t mean we’re giving up on discipline and homemaking. We’re letting go of those things as idols.
Why I Don’t Keep the House Clean
2. Out of pride
4. Because I think a clean house determines my worth. It doesn’t. Christ does.
5. Because I think cleanliness is next to godliness. I hate to break it to you, but that’s not in the Bible. I’ll wait here while you look up that verse. Or you can keep reading here, because you’re not going to find it.
6. To earn favor with my husband. He loves me and places high value on the things that we have decided I should spend my time on, including cleaning, cooking, ministering to other moms, playing games with the kids, and even writing this blog. I have his unconditional love, and keeping a perfect house won’t change that.
Why I Keep My House Clean
1. I hate wasting time looking for things. If everyone puts their shoes in the right spot, then guess what? I won’t waste 10 minutes on a shoe quest tomorrow. It’s a good thing.
2. I don’t like to waste money. So many of us buy things needlessly simply because we can’t find them. But if I can easily see what spices are in my spice cabinet, I won’t end up with three canisters of oregano.
3. I believe you can make a case for cleanliness and order as a part of good stewardship in scripture. I do think it’s Biblical to take care of the good things that God has given us (every good and perfect gift is from above, and that includes our homes, our husbands, and our children).
4. Because being “busy at home” is part of being the godly woman described in Titus 2. This can mean a variety of things, including caring for our home, our children, and our husbands in many different ways. Sometimes (but not all the time), that involves cleaning the house. It can also mean reading stories to the kids.
5. As a springboard to ministry. I find that when I’m keeping my house picked up, I’m more likely to open up our home to those around us. We love having families over for dinner, backyard barbecues, or mommy play dates. It’s far easier to make that happen when the house is at least somewhat picked up.
6. I want my home to be a safe haven for my family. In contrast to the world around us, a world of sin and unfaithfulness, I want my home to be a place of security, faithfulness, and order, a place of peace. I want them to want to be home.
7. To meet my husband’s needs (and my own). If you asked both my husband and I to rank our needs, we would both place a high premium on order and peace in the home. That means we don’t like conflict and we don’t like chaos. If the house is picked up when my husband walks in from work, it communicates rest and peace to him instead of chaos, so it meets his needs.
That said, we also understand seasons in life. When I became pregnant with our third baby, I had a 2 year old and a 9 month old. And the house spiraled out of control for 9 months because I spent a lot of time vomiting and even more time resting. We just couldn’t worry about the house. I think our baby was 1 before our house started becoming orderly again, simply because of our stage of life.
Let me be clear in my rally against perfectionism. I’ve written several things recently about dirty floors and how they’re OK. But to be honest, I still love order and I think, to a certain extent, it’s important. But it’s not vital. It doesn’t determine our worth as women, even as homemakers. And an orderly home is never more important than our families and ministering to those around us.
Why do you keep a clean house? What did I leave off the list?
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