Grace for My Home | Christian Moms, Growing in Faith, Spirit-Led, Hearing from God, Sowing Truth

Is the Housework All My Responsibility?

November 09, 2023 Audrey McCracken | Mom Encourager Season 2 Episode 65
Grace for My Home | Christian Moms, Growing in Faith, Spirit-Led, Hearing from God, Sowing Truth
Is the Housework All My Responsibility?
Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Ever struggled to find the balance between managing household chores and maintaining healthy relationships within your family? In this episode, I share my journey from being a single independent woman to becoming a wife and mother who embraces my role as a homemaker.  

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Hello friends, welcome back to Grace For my Home. I hope that you're doing well and I hope that you've been able to stay healthy. We are fighting the flu at our home my oldest two sons, david and Luke. They have the flu and so it's been challenging trying to stay healthy and take care of them at the same time. But so far so good. Me and my youngest son, caleb, and my husband we have been able to avoid it so far, thank goodness. So we've had a challenging week with that, and also, I think I told you a few weeks ago that our church has physically moved. We just we didn't just plan a church, we uprooted a church and put it in a new city our whole church, the whole congregation, and so that has been exciting, different for sure. You know we get so accustomed. You know we have been at that church for, I guess, about 28 years now, and there are people there who have been there a lot longer than I have. So you know that that's not an easy thing. That is a huge transition, and so, as we are making this step, believing that we're being led by the Lord and praying for direction, you know we're just having to to love on each other, to remind each other, you know, while we're doing this because sometimes obedience does not always feel good, right, we are creatures of habit and comfort, and when things that we are accustomed to and things we like get taken away or or or are adjusted, it can take us a while to catch up, you know. And so that is another area where we have just been stretched, but at the same time we're trying to make room for new people, because we believe that God wants a big family. You know, jesus died so that he could bring men and women into the kingdom, and so we want to go to a place where we can share that message and have room to grow God's family. That's our heart. We'll tell you a funny story about this week's podcast. Sometimes when I'm in the middle of something, I'll think of a podcast topic and I'll text myself. And this week I was in the middle of something, couldn't stop to write it down. So I talked to Siri and I said send me a text. And this the topic was, or what came to my mind at that moment was are all of the domestic duties my responsibility? And I sent myself a text. I thought, but later in the day I looked and I had actually sent it to my husband, michael. So immediately I called him because I can only imagine what he thought when he got that text, because I sent him a text saying are all of the domestic duties my responsibility? So I thought he probably thinks what have I done? What is she upset about? And I really wasn't. I wasn't upset about anything, that was just in my mind. And I called him and he just laughed. He said I just figured I forgot to do something or I left something on the floor I wasn't supposed to, or, and I said no, no, no, no. I was just trying to remind myself because I think that's an interesting topic and I think that there are so many opinions out there and my opinion may not line up with your opinion. So can I just do a disclaimer up front? You don't have to like my opinion or agree with it, but I just want to talk with you today kind of how my evolution of taking care of home and who does what, and how all this works together, how it has looked, and maybe it will help you to give yourself a little grace or at least look at things a little differently. You know, I've noticed that sometimes, if I can hear somebody else's story, I can see my story through a better light or a different light, and sometimes that helps me give myself a little grace. Because I'm going to tell you we have to give ourselves grace. God gives us grace, but a lot of times we're harder on ourselves than the Lord is. You know, I remember when I was struggling with anger, I did a whole podcast on that. If that's something that you struggle with one of my first podcasts. But when I was struggling with anger, one of the hardest things for me was to give myself grace, because I was mad at me, you know, I just was offended at my own self and so I just was holding myself to this high standard that I wasn't meeting, and so I was constantly mad at me and it was hard for me to give myself grace. But I found that as I started to give myself grace, it was easier for me to give other people grace, because do you know that we really do deflect the way that we treat ourselves A lot of times does reflect the way we treat other people and vice versa. And so I said all that to say I want to talk with you this week about the domestic duties, the things in the house, you know, the everyday things, because I like to talk a lot about scripture, I like to teach in the Bible, I love to talk about spiritual things. But you know, we all live in a house and we all have Things that have to be done. You know, we can't always live in the clouds, we can't always talk about spiritual things. A lot of times that everyday things or where we get caught up and if we don't see them with eyes of grace, well, if we don't see them through spiritual eyes, then they we can get. We can get tripped up. And I'll just give you a little history of me and maybe you can relate maybe not best case you can kind of understand when I'm coming from a little bit because of the way I grew up. I was determined as a young woman not to be dependent on anyone. I had in my head that I was gonna have a profession, I was gonna have a good paying job and I, of course I did want to get married. I did won't love, but I was not going to be dependent on any Husband to take care of me. And so I went off to college because I was going to be an engineer. Not that I really want to be an engineer, it's just everybody told me that I could be an engineer and the engineers may made lots of money. And so I thought, well, there there is my ticket. So I went to Clemson University, got a degree in engineering, but my last year in in at Clemson I became a Christian and so that changed things. You know, I was on this path to be this career woman, this engineer, I was gonna make a lot of money, I wasn't gonna need anybody, and then I met Jesus and he changed my thinking and he showed me that I, I did need somebody, I needed him and that this independent mindset that I had, that I still struggle with today. I'll be honest with you that it was gonna have to be adjusted because I Wanted to prove to the world that I didn't need anything or anyone. So, as a new Christian, I had a lot of learning to do. Well, don't we all right? But when I got married, I brought a lot of that in the relationship with me, you know, and I thought that I had gotten rid of that. A lot of that, and I had, but there was still a lot left to be done. You know, if God, god doesn't change us, he doesn't snap his fingers and we're instantly like Jesus. It is a process that we have to submit to. He wants our permission before he takes things from our heart and changes us. He wants us to be a part of the process. And so when, when we got married, my husband and I and it was just the two of us, and I will I have to give Michael His due. He has always been helpful around the house. He does not expect me to wait on him, he never has. So we shared a lot of the home things. You know I would, of course I would. At night I would cook supper. I wanted to do that. I don't think I was that great at it, I could cook a few things, but you know, I cooked supper, but there were mornings that I would wake up and he would have cooked me breakfast. And so we, you know we I saw that as we serve each other right, he had to iron clothes, for you know his, every day he wore suit and tie and so he would iron His clothes at night and sometimes, if he was running late, I would do that for him. But you know, it was just kind of like a shared responsibility and he never made me feel like I have to or I should, and I'm thankful for that. But I will be honest with you. I was surprised, especially once kid, once the kids came along, how much I wanted to make my house a home. See, I had never had that domestic gene. There was never anything in me that wanted to Decorate or look at magazines about. You know how to decorate. I just figured that some people were like that and some weren't, and I just wasn't. But once I had a home and once we started filling that home with kids, there was something in me that wanted to make a place where they wanted to be, and wanted to make a place that was comfortable, especially when I Quit my job and came home, because I was there all day. So I did want to make a nice place and I noticed some things and, like I said, this may just be me, but I think that it there's a lot of people out there that it will resonate with. One of the things I noticed was, though my husband does like a clean home, he never felt the weight or the responsibility of making it that way. Now he would help me, but I noticed that I always felt the responsibility for it, where he always felt like he was helping me and my old self would have thought, and sometimes did think well, that's just not right. This should be 50-50. And maybe it should, but he couldn't help that. He didn't feel that burden and I couldn't help that. I did it just naturally I felt like I want to make this house a home, I wanted to nest, and that struck me as strange because I'd never felt that before. So the Lord started helping me to see ways that I could do that and started showing me that I was trying to put that burden on him and it wasn't his burden and it never would be his burden, and just be thankful that he, as in Michael, is not trying to put it on you. And that was helpful for me when I started seeing it, because I really do think it was a God-given desire to make my house a home. It's in God, says in Titus. In Titus 2, verse 5, he says to women. He says be self-controlled, pure, working at home, kind and submissive to your own husbands. That the word of God may not be reviled, and I think it was the King James. And it says keepers of the home. And I had this desire to keep my home and, like I said, I truly believe it was God-given. And so I started doing more things at home, and not only doing them but seeing them, as this is my responsibility. I do want to say here that that was a gradual thing for me and I never really felt, and still don't feel, that I'm great at housekeeping. You know, some people just love it. My mother-in-law and my mom. They are excellent housekeepers and they just see things. They can come in and in 15 minutes it's like they can whip things into shape. Where I'm still trying to figure out what needs to be done and I do think that's a gift and I don't necessarily think I have that gift, but the Lord helped me to do better, to do good for me, and I'm thankful for that, because I wanted to make a place where my children wanted to be, and if you come into my home, even today, it is not beautifully decorated. That is not my gift, but I do like to have some kind of order. Now, you may disagree on certain days. If you came in and saw what you think. There's no order here and things have changed even in the last few months, as I've had to be away from home more and my husband he'll never listen to this podcast, but I got to give him credit he has jumped in and helped me. He sees that I'm doing all kinds of things that don't have as much time to be home as I used to be, and so he's helping me with things and I appreciate that. But you know what? I know that it doesn't weigh on him the way it weighs on me and he is helping and he sees it as he is helping me and that's not necessarily wrong. And see, I know that in this, probably, when not there, who are dying right now, saying, no, it's just as much his responsibility. Well, maybe it is no-transcript. I think God gives us as moms, as women, a heart for our homes, and we live in a society today that just wants us to be independent and say oh, no, no, no, no, no, you've been liberated. Well, I can't help that, I care about it, I can't help that I want it to be inviting and I can't put that burden on my husband unless God gives it to him. So through the years we've learned to work together and I really do think that when you serve each other and I'm not just talking about women serving men, I'm talking about husband and wife serving each other that when you serve each other, when you create an environment where we are looking out for each other's best interest, and it promotes goodwill in our home and there's not this constant tug of war over well, I did the dishes last time, or why isn't this shirt ironed? Or I can't find this when we see that we love each other, that we're having grace with each other and even with we're having grace with ourselves, then it makes for a better home, if nothing else, just for a better environment, a better atmosphere at home. And it has helped me to see through the years that this is a place where we love each other. This is a place where we serve each other. It's not about perfection, it's about creating a place where people want to be. And as a mom, as the wife of that home, whether I'm working outside the home or working exclusively inside the home, I still feel that responsibility and I accept that responsibility and I don't try to put it on my husband and I'm not mad at God for giving me that desire or that, that weight. I accept it, I embrace it, and a lot of times I don't live up to it, but that's okay. I still see it as mine and just knowing that that's my responsibility helps me not to put it on my husband. Now I must tell you you may feel completely different than me, and that's fine. You may feel that it is all your woman's responsibility. She should just serve that man. Well, that's fine, serve that man. You may think, oh no, honey, no, no, no, no, no, it's 50-50. You should never do more than he's doing and if that works for y'all, that's fine, because I have found a happy medium where I'm not mad at God, there's mutual respect and we don't fight about who does what. You know, I Accept him, I accept his help and I also accept that it doesn't weigh on him the way it weighs on me. And I believe, like I said, I believe that that is a God-given desire that the Lord gave me because he knew I needed it and and I didn't have that when we first got married. When we first got married, I didn't feel that. I just felt like you know, it's just, we'll do whoever need, whoever can do it, we'll do it. But as the kids came along and as I changed and as I wanted to create a place, then this desire in my heart grew to make a place and God used that and I'm thankful for that. And I'm not gonna say that we don't have Issues. Sometimes, you know it, every time we get in the car to go somewhere, especially if it's a sporting event I have to make sure we have everything washed and sometimes that's frustrating. Now I have taught them to use the washing machine, but just like their dad. It does not weigh on them because that they're thinking well, mom's got that, mom's always got that. That can be Refrestrating. But I've tried as a mom to teach them things so that when they go out on their own or, lord forbid, something should happen to me they're not helpless. They know how to do some things like cook and wash clothes and those kind of things, and I, as when they were younger, I saw them as my helpers. I Saw them as I'm training them to be my helpers, to take some things off of me, and they did and, and sometimes they still do. They're not as hot and they're not home as much as they used to be, so it's falling back on me, but in a pinch they know how, and I'll do a whole podcast on chores, because that wasn't. That's also can be a very frustrating area, and Learning how to help my children learn chores so they could help me, that took a lot off of me, especially when they were home or when I was homeschooling With all of them at home. So I just I guess the bottom line what I'm trying to say is Find what works for you and don't let anybody else try to put their Convictions on you. If it works for you and there's peace in your home, then you're doing it right. Because you see, a lot of times what we try to do is and I say we as in people, right, just in general we try, we want to see what the rules are. This is the rules, and if you do it this way, you're doing it right, because we want to be able to judge if we're doing it right or if we're doing it wrong, and so somebody doesn't do it the way we have decided is the right way. We think they're doing it wrong, and Sometimes we're just doing it differently because we have different personalities, we've got different situations and we all have different gifts. You know, I have a friend and she is a wonderful decorator. I mean like beautiful. You walk in her home and it's just you feel like, oh, my goodness, this is out of a magazine and she decorated our coffee shop and all the time people come in and they're like, oh, this place is beautiful and that's her gift. I don't have that gift, but that's okay. You know, I'm working with what I got right. And there are other people where I know that the man likes to clean. I mean, he enjoys cleaning. Are you gonna tell him, no, you can't do that. If God gave him that gift, let the man enjoy himself, right, and some women are out there going. I wish I had that man. Well, you know, god knows what you need, but we don't have to push ourselves and other people into roles that God hasn't given us. But we can accept the roles, the gifts, the situation, the puzzle that he has and make the best of it. You know, things are never perfect and they're never gonna be perfect, but they don't have to be perfect to be good. So I just encourage you to ask the Lord, to show you, lord, what are my strengths, what are my weaknesses, the areas where I'm not that good at. How can I get better? What's the minimum that I need to do here to make this house feel livable? And you know, lord, give me your heart for my home. God, give me your heart for my home. That's a wonderful prayer that we can pray. Father, help me to love my home so that I can love those that live here. And we're not talking about showcase homes. Right To me, that's not a that's not a livable home If my home has to be so perfect all the time that everybody is nervous about messing it up, then they're not really enjoying it. I would rather have a livable home, a home that we know where things are, that we don't feel dirty, things feel clean but we're not worried about messing up the pillows or getting dirt on the floor. So I hope this has been encouraging to you. I hope that, if nothing else, that's helped you to give yourself a little grace and maybe think differently about what your job or what your role or what your responsibility is at home. And if you're not sure, I hope it's encouraged you to ask him, ask God. Well, show me what your heart is for me in this home, with these people that you've given me to love on and take care of, and I know he'll do that. Father, I thank you for these precious moms, lord, whatever stage of life they're in right now. That, lord, there's enough grace for them and I pray, lord, that you would help us to be keepers of our home. That, lord, we would see what you've given us and value it enough to take care of it and, lord, most of all, to value those that you've given us to love. Lord, I pray that you would help us, lord, to love people more than things and to take care and serve those that you've given us with love, and we thank you for it, lord. We thank you for helping us to see the things around us and the people around us and our responsibilities through your eyes. In Jesus' name, amen, I hope you've enjoyed this episode today and will join me here again next week. You can find more encouragement on my blog at gracefromahomecom. God bless, bye-bye.

Welcome and Life Updates
My Journey to Finding God's Heart for My Role as a Homemaker
Accepting the Responsibility to be the Keeper of My Home
Prayer for Mothers