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Word of the Day
I really do not know that anything has ever been more exciting than diagramming sentences. Gertrude Stein

18 May 2008

...to be busy at home

I don't know what I've been doing lately. You'd think with all the time I've spent not blogging, that my ironing pile would be smaller, and that my family would have had better meals to eat than frozen pizza and defrosted leftovers. I don't know what I've been doing. My lack of focus really does concern me sometimes.

Lately, there are two Scriptures that have gotten my attention. Because I'm convicted.

Proverbs 31:27
She watches over the ways of her household, and does not eat the bread of idleness.

Titus 2:5
... to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God.

I think the KJV uses the phrase "keepers at home" instead of "busy at home". The Greek word for "keepers" means to be a "worker" or a "skilled craftsman".

When I first discovered the wonderful world of blogs, one of the first ones I bookmarked was Pleasant View Schoolhouse. I love Anna's blog. Not because it's well-written or because it's filled with beautiful photography. (It is.) I was completely drawn in by her heart for her home. She reads, she sews, she embroiders, she cooks, and so much more! Reading her posts made me want to commit my heart more fully to my home; to be a real homemaker. Not just a stay-at-home-mom. I feel I have a clearer vision of what it means to BE a homemaker. Although I don't know Anna personally, her blog has in some way, helped to fulfill Titus 2 in my life.

...teach the older women to be reverent in the way they live, not to be slanderers or addicted to much wine, but to teach what is good. Then they can train the younger women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind...

Anna's blog has been a window into her world, and by allowing me to peek inside, she has helped me to do these things better. Her words ignite a passion in my heart for my home. Who can place a value on that? We're to work diligently wherever the Lord has us, right? To bloom where we're planted. My work is my family and my home.

I've always liked being at home, but I've struggled alot with having my heart in it. I find it very easy to spend my days doing nothing. I am not, by nature, a highly motivated person. If I don't keep it in check, I have a strong tendency to be lazy and waste days on end, accomplishing nothing of real value. But that's not where I'm the most happy. I feel best about myself, and my life at home, when I put my heart into it. When I'm busy at home, and not eating the bread of idleness.

So today, I cleaned the floors (swept/mopped/vacuumed) which were in desparate need. It was way overdue. Puddin' is one of those babies that puts everything in their mouths. My other two weren't like that. I'm not kidding when I say that every day I have to finger-sweep Puddin's mouth because he's eaten something off the floor. Today, his Daddy took a love bug out of his mouth. That just makes me feel sick. I can't understand why, but my boy loves to eat off the floor. Lately though it's hard to blame him. There have been so many crumbs and tiny things to entice him. And it's not just the floor. He also loves the bathroom. And his favorite thing in there? The trash can. I have walked in there to find him chewing on a wet wipe. From the trash can. I don't consider myself a germaphobe, but that's just nasty. I'll be happy when he stops putting all manner of disgust into his mouth. I can tell you that much. And if I'm keeping busy at home, there will be less for him to munch on.

If you're in need of some homemaking inspiration, please, please, please, go read this post at Pleasant View Schoolhouse. And if you have some time to peruse, do indulge. You'll be glad you did, I assure you.

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Carlie Faulk said...

Great post Jodie! Sometimes I feel the same way. I was just giving myself a stern talking to about NOT doing nothing. lol! No bumming around and hanging out when there are things to do. Summer's coming and we could just "hang out" all day long. My problem isn't housekeepig though. I find when I'm being idle the kids argue because they're bored - in direct result of me not motivating them.

One scripture I like is the scripture is Proverbs 29:15. "The rod of reproof gives wisdom, but a child left to himself brings shame on his mother." I read it in one of my daily devotions. It was paraphrased something like this, "does your child often embaress you? Perhaps you've been lax with either disciplining the flesh or teaching the heart."

Makes me remember that when I'm not doing my job because I'm just hanging out instead of taking care of my home that it causes problems all the way around. (Let's not even talk about the laundry mountain)

Sorry for the book! :)

The Bayou Belles and Their Beau said...

Girl, the fact that you even have these concerns means that you're moving in the right direction. We all struggle with being good housekeepers, mothers, wives, friends, etc. It's a daily walk that we go through.

God's actually been dealing with me in an opposite way, probably for the past several years. I have decided a lot of times to let the house go and go play outside with my children or read them a book or play the Wii. No, I may not have the cleanest floor or bathrooms in the world, in fact, I know I don't. But, the Scripture I keep going back to is when Martha was busy cooking, cleaning, etc. and Mary was at the feet of Jesus, and Jesus said that Mary had chosen "the better part" because she would always have cooking and cleaning, but He would not be with her forever.

That's how I'm starting to feel about my children and family. We only have them for a short time and then they're gone. And you know what? I think they'll remember me spending time with them more than whether or not Momma had a clean floor.

OK, now I'm done. I'm off my soapbox and I'll go back to folding laundry. All this is not to say that I don't try to keep a clean house. It just has become not as huge of a priority in the past few years. But, yes, I do struggle with making sure it does not become a huge priority too. Sometimes I "Martha" out, and my hubby's always there to say "It's OK Martha." Then I know I need to chill out.

Could this be a longer comment? Sorry.

Tonja said...

Lord, bring balance...that's always my prayer! I tend to go to extremes, but I'm ready for the balance. I can totally relate with you on this one...I think I'll go check out Pleasant View blog :)

about Puddin' eating off of the floor...reminds me of RJ. We used to think that if we'd just put her food on the floor, she'd eat better! It was just more interesting down there :) She did eventually start walking, so that eliminated a lot of floor eating...however, even now I find her putting the strangest things in her mouth (hehe...I'll have to leave it at that.) but at least I'm not finger sweeping her mouth anymore :)

Tonja said...

ok, just got back from Pleasant View...I can see why you love it :)
Here are a few notes I took:

1. get up early and make breakfast (that's a doozy, huh?)
2. have a plan for each day (easier said than done, but definitely doable - the key is discipline)
3. do I have to wear a dress all the time? that's not in the bible is it?
4. make each room beautiful - working on that one
5. meals should be included in daily planning - again, discipline and definitely skill when you're trying to avoid trash :)

thanks for sending me there...I'm encouraged.

Jackie @ Our Moments Our Memories said...

Oh, I LOVE this post. Mostly because it lets me know I'm not alone in this. I wrote a a post a few weeks back on this exact verse (Prov. 31: 27). I definitely lean towards the "slacker" end of the spectrum...working on it, though!

Thanks for expressing this so beautifully.

Jodie said...

Yes, absolutely, balance is key!

I meant this less in the way of housekeeping (cleaning, etc.) but more in the way of homemaking (taking good care of the people inside my home while running an efficient household).

Balance, balance, balance. It's a delicate thing.

Also, Carlie, I totally understand what you're saying, and girl, I concur. :)

Teresa @ A Life At Home said...

I love to read others posts on being keepers at home. I actually went back and read one of my posts that I did about having a heart for home. This is something I found that gives you something to chew on.

"What does being busy at home mean? A few definitions of busy that I found are: engaged in action, full of activity, bustling. A few synonyms I found are: industrious, diligent, and my personal favorite, assiduous. assiduous means marked by careful, constant attention or persistent application."

I think assiduous fits in perfectly with being a "keeper" rather than busy at home. We will become skilled as we give constant, careful attention to our homes.

By homes, I don't mean only cleaning our homes, but everything that comes with a home.

Great post, Jodie!

Sarah@Life in the Parsonage said...

I SO needed this post today!!! Thank you! Also, your comments on my blog this morning, just made my day, thank you :) AND, I may have mentioned you today in my most...may have ;)

Happy Wednesday, Jodie!

Sarah@Life in the Parsonage said...

in my "most" ?!? good grief. should have been POST! HA!

Elizabeth said...

i've totally been there...and am off and on there constantly. there are days i feel so good with all that i got accomplished and other days where i'm so out of it and sometimes barely keeping my head above water and haven't been productive all day!

being a productive mom is definitely a daily & constant prayer of mine! those verses are convicting and it's so good to hear them again in my needy ears.


Troy & Tara Livesay Family said...

Thanks for the link!