Why Keeping House Matters So Much Right Now
Those grown girls, my daughter and daughter-in-law, were chatting with me after our weekly Sunday lunch. The conversation turned to housekeeping, and I found out both of them watch YouTube videos of women cleaning–for fun. They watch them for fun.
“It’s just so relaxing,” Jayme said. Mallory agreed.
So there I was, a 53-year-old woman, trying to wrap my mind around the fact that women video themselves cleaning their homes and that twenty-somethings want to sit down and observe this, as a relaxing activity of choice. What in the world? So I went to YouTube and found one woman who makes cleaning videos that have close to 100,000 views per video! This is for real.
I get it, though. Last year was excruciatingly difficult, and I found myself unemployed and needing some income. With a spirit that felt like it had been scraped over a grater for months, I landed a job cleaning vacation rentals for several weeks, and it turned out to be therapy for which I received a paycheck.
Cleaning began to relax the tension in me that had been building for so long.
What is it about keeping house? Laundry, toilets, showers, linens, mopping, dusting, tidying, wiping, and taking out the trash. Aren’t these the things we dread and avoid? Isn’t this the work of which masterful procrastination is made? Aren’t these chores the yuck and grunge of our lives?
No. No, no, no. Lies.
The act of keeping house contains healing properties. I know about healing properties, because I work in a compounding pharmacy now. We have walls lined with supplements. Just the other day someone came in asking for pine extract, and when I raised my eyebrows at this, the pharmacist kindly took time to tell me the ways in which pine extract benefits the human body. Who knew?
But we don’t hear about how rich and healing the actions of housekeeping can be.
How does housekeeping benefit a woman’s mind?
How does it benefit her body? Her spirit?
How does it benefit her family and her community?
May I suggest, in a time when the world is crumbling around the edges, that keeping house might even be just the answer for this raggedy world we’re living in. It is possible that the great answers for continents and countries might not lie on the world stage but in the heart of a single woman who cares well for the core of her home. Healing properties from the inside out.
Yes, there is something soothing in the regular daily chores that need done in a house. Just last week I thoroughly cleaned our shower that was long overdue for a scrubbing. As the grime disappeared, the clean surface started to show through, and I felt something. I felt good.
Is there anything more we want right now than to feel good? To do good?
In those quiet hours I spent cleaning vacation rentals, the words for a book started to form in my mind, so I wrote them down for you. It’s a collection of thoughts that came as I folded sheets and refilled toilet paper, and poured laundry soap into the washer. It’s a book about housekeeping.
Don’t groan. This is a warm book that is meant to be an encouragement to you, along with a few fresh ideas for house management. My heart is that it would read like the back label on pine bark extract–something natural that will help you feel better in so many ways. God has given us something good in the management of our homes, if we just take the time to refresh our perspective on how important this role is in our lives and the lives of those around us.
The idea of hating housework has been a whispered lie for too long. Let's turn a warm light on how you care for your home and all of the lovely benefits of your labor there.More info →
I have been having so many conversations in the last few months with my daughter. She is a new mom and learning to juggle all her tasks (and telling me she wishes she had listened when I tried to teach her all those years!). She is learning that cleaning house can bring joy. I don’t necessary like the individual tasks, but seeing everything start to shine and sparkle, knowing I worked hard, and that my family is blessed by my efforts; it’s a fulfillment of what God has called me to do. I look forward to reading your new book and sharing it with my daughter and 2 daughters-in-love!
You’re a good mom! She knows where to go to get good counsel. I hope my book has some encouragement in it for your family. That would make me so happy!
As someone has already commented, this was one subject that I never thought I’d get excited about reading a book on, but it has grabbed me. I’ve just read the free sample chapters on Kindle … beautiful. Ordering the book now. I look forward to reading about your life over the past year and hopefully learning from and being encouraged, and challenged, by your experience! Thanks for your honesty and transparency. I’m excited about what God is going to do in me through this book. Thank you all the way from Northern Ireland!
Hello to you in Ireland! I told a dear friend about my book and she said, “Oh no. I’m going to feel guilt.” I assured her this was only supposed to be a cozy, encouraging read. I hope you find it to be that way! We all need as much encouragement as we can get right now.
Christy! This is WONDERFUL! I’ve already ordered the book. I SO needed to see this whole “dirty” topic from a new perspective. Believe me, I do NOT like cleaning…but you have generously, graciously shared this new perspective and I SO needed it.
Head’s up…I’ve told FOTF they should invite you to share about this.
One question though…and I hesitate to bring it up, but…why the image of a “maid” cleaning? I can see a humility, a service in it…but I also thought “Ha! A maid? Who can afford a maid? I wish! I thought this was about ME cleaning???” (Plus she looks not-white, which could be seen as stereotypical.)
I asked for & received your “Thriving In God’s Word” for Christmas & I’m so enjoying it. THANK YOU for sharing your words & heart with us!
I hope you enjoy the book, Nancy! I wrote this book inspired by my six weeks as a maid, cleaning vacation rentals, so I felt this represented my perspective. This was just a beautiful picture to me, of someone doing excellent work cleaning. Hopefully that will feel like a compliment to anyone who does this work for a living, regardless of ethnicity.
Wow Christie PTL!! Who knew that cleaning house could be presented in such a warm and comforting way! I just left your words in your video presentation!! Not a book I thought I’d ever be excited to order, but you have done just that for me??
Opps. “Love” not left??
Aww, thanks! I was so hoping this would feel warm. Thanks for the encouragement.
You are always delivering just what I need at the exact moment I need it! And in such a way that it doesn’t condemn, but encourages…so like Jesus! I just ordered the book and appreciate your pearls of wisdom in my inbox. So wish we could have coffee/tea and treats! You’re a blessing!
You’re so kind. The Lord certainly is able to gently encourage us just where we need it most. Coffee and a chat sounds wonderful!
I am so excited to read this! While I don’t love keeping house, I do love the comfort of daily rhythms that keep me grounded and grateful. I love the peace and joy that follow.
I hope you enjoy it, Lindsey. You’ve perfectly summed up the theme of my book!
You are the sister, full of wisdom, I always wanted but never had…you’ve mentored me for years whether you realize it or not! My hubs and I struggle to find people our age at the same stage of life…he’s 50 and I’m 42, and this is our 7th year homeschooling our kids (Chase is 11 and Maggie is 7)…each post you share always speaks right to my heart…I know the Holy Spirit is guiding you…I’m thrilled to dive into this book with coffee in hand…hugs from NC! ?
Sisters it is! And you certainly have been a constantly encouraging one to me. Thank you!!!
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