Last Updated on September 3, 2013

I think all I ever do is laundry.  There are always baskets and baskets in one stage or another throughout my house.  There is the overflowing dirty-clothes basket in the bathroom, the folded-but-not-put-away baskets in the hallway, the not folded or sorted baskets outside the laundry room, and the baskets piled high with dirty laundry in the laundry room.  And the one basket of clothes I’m gonna have to wash again because for the second time I didn’t take it out of the washer in time to avoid that familiar mildewy scent.  Then there are the clothes strewn all over my children’s bedroom floors, and the piles of clothes my youngest children tossed out of their dresser in order to find their favorite tutus.  Lastly, there are the clothes all nicely folded and sorted on the kitchen table until we need the tabletop and they are pushed aside, over and into things.

I wanted to find some amazing spiritual lesson in all that laundry. Perseverance?  Character development? Contentment in chaos? Joy in suffering?  I tried to think of something each basket of laundry in its particular location and situation could represent in my Christian walk.  I couldn’t think of any.  I guess sometimes chores are just that, chores.  I must figure out how to do it without so much grumbling.  I’ve been trying for 40+ years – I’m sure one of these days it’s gonna click.

As a single parent, the laundry nightmare is particularly daunting.  It seems like it shouldn’t have changed that much, but I guess it’s compounded by the unmanageable amount of chores and responsibilities that we single parents have.  There are so many tasks to do and, unfortunately, laundry sits in one of the top spots.

I think the key to most housework battles we face as single parents is to embrace the chaos – to simply enjoy a full house, noisy nights, messy tables, yucky floors, and loads and loads of laundry.  I’m thankful for all those clothes because there was a time not too long ago when I worried about being able to provide for my children.

I’m constantly reminding my children to do everything without grumbling or complaining.  Must be another “do as I say, not as I do” mama thing.  But it shouldn’t be!  It should be second nature for us to give thanks in all circumstances (even buried alive in laundry), pray without ceasing (even that the laundry would decrease a bit) and rejoice always (even if it’s just for the five minutes there is no laundry in a basket.  Wait!  Does that ever happen??).  I have determined to strive to model thanksgiving instead of grumbling no matter how the clothes pile up around me!

I want to find that even in doing my laundry I can be a blessing to my family and my Lord.  Ultimately, I want to find a way to bring God glory through my life, my attitude and, yes, even my laundry!

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  1. Wendy Blackwell says:

    I love this!! I am always lamenting the laundry that really is never won. Thanksgiving and not grumbling is a learn curve for me…but I have started to try and be thankful in the mess (for many of the things you wrote) and for the little arms in the holes, the feet that walked through the mud and the muck, etc. (sometimes that actually works! LOL). Great post.

    1. Sue Birdseye says:

      Thank you! And thank you for the reminder of all those wonderful people who fill those clothes that make that laundry pile! That is a good reminder – definitely!

  2. Thanks, dearest Sue, for sharing your quest for godliness in scaling Mount Washmore, Love you, friend!

    1. Sue Birdseye says:

      Mount Washmore!!! That's great! You are such a blessing to me!

  3. Well….this post made me feel better! I am not alone! Hooray. I agree that sometimes we need to be so thankful for the everyday joys. I try to tell myself that someday my house will be quiet, someday I will have all the laundry done and put away, and someday I will be sipping at my coffee in peace and wondering what my kids are up to. I will think of these days and wish so badly to go back! So for today I will smile!

    1. Sue Birdseye says:

      You are so right! I wish I could remember that more often! These days are precious! Although I am fairly certain there will be chores that will not be missed! haha!

  4. Thank you that I am not the only one out there with the laundry thing- I read the post out loud to DH and I think he realized for the first time that I am not the only woman who loves God and still struggles with this- haha!
    "I’m constantly reminding my children to do everything without grumbling or complaining. Must be another ‘do as I say, not as I do’ mama thing. But it shouldn’t be!"– Such meaningful thoughts- thank you!

    1. Sue Birdseye says:

      Thank you so much for sharing — it blesses me to know I am not alone in my laundry exploits!

  5. The only positive I can find with the endless laundry is that it takes the guesswork out of what will be hanging around my neck 'today'. Today being any day we are not on vacation. There's something to be said for the obvious. God bless you and thanks for sharing!