In a prior post, I mentioned my desire to start memorizing Scripture again. And so I did, beginning with something inspirational and easy to memorize: the “virtuous woman” verses in Proverbs 31. My kids have been listening to me recite them periodically, just as I listen to the passages they are required to learn each week. (I have to admit, I’ve given myself a lot longer than a week to learn these verses—but slow and steady wins the race.)
Entire books have been written about the superwoman of Proverbs 31:10-31, but I didn’t want to read any of them until I had memorized these verses and meditated upon them myself. One of the first verses that struck me was verse 13.
“She seeketh wool, and flax, and worketh willingly with her hands.”
My kids said I had that one covered. They know how much I enjoy shopping online for the best deals on fine fabrics and making them into something for our home.
BUT…what about the idea of “working willingly” with my hands in a more general sense? Yes, I willingly sew, craft, and do home renovations. But what about the day-to-day stuff? The grunt work that keeps a home running smoothly?
I must admit, I do not always do laundry, sweep floors, and wash dishes very willingly. In fact, there are times when I do those tasks a bit grudgingly. They take away time from other things I’d rather be doing (like blogging!). I often end up doing them after a full day in the home school room, when my energy is low and my patience is wearing thin.
But whenever I catch myself feeling this way, I consider something I heard on the radio years ago: each task we are given, from the least to the greatest, is God’s task for us in that moment. Whether I’m drilling spelling words with my eight-year-old or scrubbing the four toilets in my house (I often question the wisdom of buying a house with that many toilets when I’m cleaning them every Friday), I’m laboring for Him.
God places great value upon work and even calls it a gift! Ecclesiastes 3:13 says,
“And also that every man should eat and drink, and enjoy the good of all his labour, it is the gift of God.”
Notice, he designed us not just to work, but to gain fulfillment from it. The above verse mentions that we should “enjoy the good” from a job well done, and Ecclesiastes 2:24 says,
“There is nothing better for a man, than that he should eat and drink, and that he should make his soul enjoy good in his labour. This also I saw, that it was from the hand of God.”
Directly from God’s hands into mine: the gift of work. It may not always be glamorous or easy, but it’s a beautiful thing.
Is there a chore you find mundane? What gets you through those tough jobs? I’d love to hear from you.