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Cleaning with Jesus

Can I let you in on a little secret?  I hate to clean!  Oh, I also hate to go to the grocery store and cook!  It wasn’t always this way.  Before computers, the internet and Facebook, cooking and cleaning were my hobbies.

Now I tend to put it off until there is no other choice.  Half of the problem is the lack of organization in our home.  The other half is my perfectionist tendencies.  I want the situation to be perfect before beginning to clean or organize.  Yep, still waiting for that….

For the past eight weeks I have participated in Melissa Taylor’s Online Bible Study of I Used to be So Organized by Glynnis Whitwer (whew that’s a mouthful!)  The study has been amazing.  I have incorporated small new habits into my days, such as not sitting anything down except where it belongs and taking an extra five minutes to straighten up a room before I leave.  Besides those two things, not much else has been accomplished.

Waking up Saturday morning with another migraine, I looked around in disgust realizing our house hadn’t been cleaned in three weeks.  Knowing some basic things need tidied I prayed “Please LORD block the pain for just thirty minutes, please!” A funny thing happened, with each area I cleaned, my migraine eased.

It was then that the LORD placed on my heart “Some of your migraines are an attack to keep your from doing the work I call you to do.  The only way to fight them is to call upon Me and do the work anyways.”  Which opened the door to a conversation with Jesus about how much I really hate cleaning.  I wanted to know “who elected me to be responsible for housecleaning?”

Moving from room to room Jesus kept speaking to me, “Don’t think of it as cleaning, think of it as prayer.  Dedicate each room as an offering of prayer for someone.  Someone who can’t clean but would give anything to do so:  a mom battling cancer, a mom with a newborn baby and no sleep, a mom with a special needs child, a wife who just lost her husband, a family losing their home, the list my daughter is endless.”

As I cleaned the fridge I told Jesus “It is so pointless to cook, I hate it!!!  Here I am a week later tossing the uneaten leftovers out.”  Jesus spoke to my soul, “Don’t despise the service of nourishing the loved ones I have blessed you with, instead as you prepare a meal for them, use this time to offer them up in prayer to Me.  Make this the time you pray for them.  Make this the time you tell Me all about your family.”

Getting on my hands and knees to mop the floors, I asked Jesus “Really, all the advancement in technology and I am still doing the old-fashioned way of mopping?”  I knew He would have words of wisdom and I wasn’t wrong.  He said “Do not despise any part of this daughter – for through this whole day you have been in contact with your Father.  You have been in contact with your Healer, your migraine is gone, right? You have also been in contact with your Personal Trainer, there is no need to spend money on a gym membership, this takes care of two needs at the same time.  See daughter, I am always providing.”

Let me just say my house sparkled, my migraine was gone, my muscles are sore and it was the best four hours of housecleaning ever!!!!  I hope this encourages you to use those things you hate as prayers to your Father.  I leave you with this reminder, from one of my favorite songs….

Well let me remind you, it all matters just as long
As you do everything you do to the glory of the One who made you,
Cause he made you,
To do
Every little thing that you do
To bring a smile to His face
Tell the story of grace
With every move that you make
And every little thing you do

Do Everything ~ Steve Curtis Chapman

 

 

 

I’m Somewhere in Here

So excited to see what Heather has for us today while she steps in for Melissa.  Join me for today’s post by Heather, by clicking here.

This is the title to Chapter 4 of I Used to be So Organized by Glynnis Whitwer.  The title capture my attention immediately, I feel like that often:  Somewhere inside me is ME.  I have been finding bits and pieces slowly but I still can’t quite get a picture of who I am. It is scary and exciting at the same time but more often it’s very lonely.

Not only did the title speak to me but sadly the truths Glynnis learns about herself are the same things I have been learning about myself and slowly through each Bible study they have been stripped away one by one.  I can relate to the behaviors Glynnis writes about:

  • I have lived my whole life on building my worth on my accomplishments;
  • I tried so hard for so long to control the world around me only to have it come crashing down;
  • Frustration reigned in my heart and mind more than anything else;
  • My heart was a mess;
  • I moped when I didn’t get my way;
  • Poison and bitterness filled my thoughts;
  • Low self-esteem, depression and feeling like a nobody has been with me for my whole life
  • I was self-centered;
  • Self-interest motivated much of my life;
  • I was motivated to prove myself worthy to others and myself by what I did;
  • My priorities were upside down;
  • It has at times (even now sadly) been about me, me, me;

 I don’t have it all together; I am a work in progress needing my Creator’s Hand each and every day.  Some days I slip back into my old habits but I catch myself pretty quickly or something comes to my attention and slaps me.

In this day and age it is easy to fall into the trap that doing more is the key to success, financial freedom and happiness but I have lived that way too long, I know that’s NOT the key.  The key is as Glynnis writes is by BEING versus DOING (page 52).  By being centered in God’s will.  If your heart is where God wants it to be, you’ll see things with new eyes, have more peace and feel less pressured to get things just so (page 54).

Take the time to enjoy the simple pleasures.  Don’t feel guilty for sitting on the porch enjoying nature, soaking in your children’s play time, enjoying a leisure hour or two with your loved one.

I drive my family crazy because I take pictures of everything, no matter what is going on.  I take pictures of the sky as we drive to dinner.  I take pictures of beautiful flowers as walk into a business, church, and someone’s home.  I take pictures of probably twenty things each and every day.  Why?  Because I don’t want to forget the way God shows up in my life.  I want to treat every day as if it were special; these moments are gone before we know it.  I have learned to stop and enjoy the simply things – however, I still need help to match my outsides with my insides (page 47).

If you would like to join our Bible study, it’s not too late.  To find out more information or to sign up go to Melissa Taylor’s website.  I want to leave you today with one verse from Chapter 4 along with one saying that my friend Karen Dye has taught me.

“The LORD does not look at the things man looks at.  Man looks at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart.”  1 Samuel 16:7b

*~* It’s NOT about me, it’s all about HIM *~*

It’s all about Him. From Girl Talk “live”