Friday starts out the same as any other day. The kids and I make plans, library, park, grocery store. We gear up for our day, we play hard and come home tired. And I still have to clean the house.
The kids go off to their respective activities. I hear talking every once in a while but mostly it’s me, music turned up and a broom or dust rag, going to town on any dust, crumbs, and dirt that are in my way. For about two hours this is all I do, focus, clean, focus, clean.
This works for me. I know I should involve the kids more, let them pass the dust rag a few times, and on occasion, as it was today, they do help a little. My son helps unload dishes and my daughter holds the dust pan while I sweep. I should probably assign some chores and get them to pitch in for real.
But really, this works best for me. I’d rather finish quickly. I like going at full speed and knowing that all dirt and grime is being swept away. I like the feeling I have when I’m finally done. I look around at the fluffed pillows on the couch, the shiny floors, the dust free end tables and picture frames. It is satisfying.
It also means I can sit back for a little while and chat here with you or I can start dinner in quiet peace, in my clean kitchen. I can sit and watch my husband play outside with the kids. I can refocus myself for the end of the week, the start of my Sabbath. And I can do it with a clean slate, pun intended.
I like that I can go to sleep on clean sheets and wake up Sabbath morning, refreshed in body and mind. And make no mistake, there have been weeks when I don’t quite get it all done. I’ve been there. It happens. But I don’t make it a habit because I just don’t feel right without the proper order of things being done.
And that’s just it. In my mind there is a proper order to things. It’s not dictated by anyone but it’s pretty rigid. Play, clean house, relax, that’s the way I feel most comfortable. And right before Sabbath I want to feel my best, so I can give my attention to the things of Sabbath.
I need to clean house and I need to clean out my mind, of stress, work, the day to day. I need to start anew in all things. Because the cleaner my heart and mind, the cleaner my soul is to soak up the goodness of true Sabbath rest. I really want that for each one of us.