This Saturday, I spent about four hours helping with the deep cleaning at my church. We washed windows, dusted ceiling fans, wiped the leaves of artificial plants, and organized the content on shelves. I haven’t started my spring cleaning at home yet but wanted to participate because I am part of this Christian community.
A mother of five explained why family participation is important. I had the conversation with her at the local Farmer’s Market a few years ago, but it stuck in my head. One of her daughters was selling brownies at the booth where her mom sold freshly made sourdough bread and granola. We began to discuss ways kids could earn money, and I asked the little girl if she did chores at home to receive an allowance. Her mother said the children did not get paid for setting and clearing the dinner table, dusting furniture, or vacuuming the rug. Why? Children helped; it was just part of being a family.
This comment provided additional insight into the Scripture on doing good works, those prepared in advance by God. [Ephesians 2:10] I take part at my home church, because they are my family. As part of the family of God, we take part in His work so of course that includes the church in which we fellowship.
With the sanctuary ready for Resurrection Sunday, my house is next. It’s time to shampoo rugs, reshelve the books stacked by the bed, and scrub the soot from the woodstove off the windows. Reading about “spring cleaning” in columns and blog posts on the Internet, I discovered much is made about this routine cultural task. Some say it is therapeutic because tidy rooms reduce stress. Also, productivity is increased because items that clutter are purged or organized making it easier to find things. In addition, household to-do lists shrink decreasing distraction.1 It is difficult to focus on a project if you keep noticing the dirty windows that need to be washed.
However, a more appropriate reason for spring cleaning our homes is being a good steward of the things of God. I must admit I first wrote “the things God gives us” such as a house to live in, for example, whether rented or purchased. But further research showed an error in my thought process. As Creator, God is the owner and I am the manager.2 I should have realized this for my husband tells me often that everything we possess belongs to God. This understanding makes it easy for him to let go of possessions as the Holy Spirit prompts him.
Yet knowing who the owner is and who the steward is also signals acts of good works. Stewardship activities are part of the good works God prepared. Another easy prompt for recognizing those good works.
God entrusts many things to us, our home being just one example. Parents are entrusted to raise their children well. The talents God gives us must be developed and used. For some, that is hours spent practicing piano. For others, hours learning to design fashion or architecture. We are stewards of the Spiritual gifts we are given as well. Paul encouraged Timothy to “fan into flame” his gift. (1 Ti 1:6)
Whatever He entrusts we provide oversight. Therefore, I begin the process of spring cleaning my house.
1-What has God entrusted to you to manage? How are you providing oversight?
2-If you are spring cleaning what are some of the things you do to take care of the home God has entrusted to you?
3-What have you found to be prompts for accomplishing the good works God prepared for us in advance?
2-Gotquestions.org “What is biblical stewardship?”
©2022 Susan Cort Johnson *All Rights Reserved