Tuesday, September 3, 2013

My Two Convictions

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I have two personal convictions for our home.  I feel that these are my responsibility.  I take both of them very serious as I feel that God has laid it on my heart to be prepared to be Jesus' hands to others. 
Let me explain...

God has supplied us with a beautiful home.  Nothing extravagant at all.  Average size and very simply decorated.  A home just the same.  When we purchased our home, we decided at that moment that the four corners that make up our property are God's to use. 

Conviction #1 - My home should always be ready for company.

This does not mean that my house is "clean" all of the time.  It also doesn't mean stuff is always picked up.  We live in our home.  But, I strive to always be within 15 minutes of having a "straightened" home.  I desire to be able to having company at any moment for any reason.  For example:  If someone calls and needs a place to stay, I want a bed to be ready to provide someone with a good night's sleep.   If someone from church calls and needs us to host an activity, we are ready within a few moments.  A friend calls and I can tell that they need a friend to listen - I can invite them over and not have to stress about the house.

Some activities that help me with Conviction #1:
  • Put things away the first time.  Don't simply move things to a new spot.  Teach your children this concept as well.
  • Everything has a place and minimize what items are "out."  Keep bookcases, walls, and counter tops free of clutter.  This makes a house look more straight.
  • If you aren't going to use it, get rid of it.  Don't keep old mail, newspapers, or magazines that you are done with as they simply take up space and make a room look cluttered.
  • New toys or activities are not pulled from the closet until other toys are put away.
  • Involve the family.  The kiddos have a few chores to do each night before going to bed.  It helps so much to wake up to a straightened home.
  • Lower my expectations on what it takes to have a home ready for others.  Company will find cobwebs and may see laundry.  They will have to step over a trail of tractors.  This is okay. 
  • Find a balance between cleaning, cooking, and playing with kiddos.  I am not perfect at this - by far - but it is important for our kiddos to learn to take care of the home that God has given.  They need to be able to play by themselves while Mommy works.  I ask the Holy Spirit to speak to me as I work to balance my responsibilities between home and our kiddos. 
  • A simple Lysol wipe can do wonders in a bathroom and kitchen to give it a fresh look in minutes.
  • Keep cabinet and closet doors closed.  It is amazing what this does to the overall look of a home.
Conviction #2 - My pantry/freezer should always be 30 minutes away from providing a family in need a meal.

Although this one ties into #1, I want to be able to provide a family a meal either at our home or by delivering it within 30 minutes.  I also freeze meals that can be prepared quickly.

For example:  A family has an emergency, I can provide them with a home-cooked meal.  A family comes over for the afternoon and we want to be able to invite them to stay for supper.  There is no need for a quick trip to the grocery store or me having to hide out in the kitchen to prepare something.  A mom calls and needs me to watch her kiddos over a meal time.  I can still focus on the kids but provide a meal as well.

Some things that help me with Conviction #2:
  • I keep supplies in my pantry for quick recipes and have a simple meal in mind for immediately preparation.
  • When I make a meal, I often double or triple the recipe (this requires almost no extra work) and put the extras in the freezer.
  • I try to keep the dishes caught up at all times.  Thankfully I have a dishwasher but it means keeping it unloaded when cycles end.  While the kids clear off the table, I do the dishes.
  • Example foods I have on hand - Brownie mix, spaghetti meal, ingredients to put together a salad, ingredients for a Dump Cake, Quesadilla ingredients, meatballs made in the freezer, cookies or cookie dough in the freezer, ingredients for our favorite soup.
Please understand that my house is no where near 100% of the time ready for company.  There are hours, days, and weeks that are crazy with dishes and laundry piled up.  But, I strive for this because I feel this is a way for me to minister to others. 

Also understand that this is my conviction and may not be yours.  But, I encourage you to think about how you can be prepared to be Jesus' hands to others - in a moment's notice.


What is a conviction you hold as a wife and/or mother?

3 comments :

  1. I just wanted to say I enjoyed this post. I also try to live by the 15 munute rule, that is, that the house should be ready for company withinn 15 minutes. Lately I've been noticing that I'm finding that to be impossible, and am working on doing some reorganizing and decluttering.

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  2. I have the same issues that you post about. As a single mom who's also going through a divorce I have high mommy convictions. I have a problem thinking that I should be a perfect mom. And I feel awful when I fall short every day.

    I think that my house should be perfect, my meals should be perfect. It's crazy. God has really been working on me to realize that I am human and to do the best I can and leave the rest to Him.

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  3. Love this post!! Very practical!

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The Our Out-of-Sync Life blog focuses on encouraging women to deepen their spiritual life, simplify daily tasks, and impress Jesus on the children around them.