Monday, March 12, 2012

Clean House or Clean Heart

My husband's cell phone rang on the way home from church. It was his son, calling to ask if he could come over...and oh, by the way, he was bringing his girlfriend whom we hadn't met.  Immediately my mind went to the breakfast dishes piled in the kitchen sink. The family room was likely a mess too. We'd had a busy weekend, and I hadn't cleaned up the house.

As we got home from church, I rushed around wildly cleaning. As I went from room to room, picking up things and putting them away, loading the dishwasher, dusting, vacuuming, I became more and more annoyed. Everyone could see how hard I was working but no one was offering to help. Finally I finished, exhausted and irritated.

I went upstairs to change out of my church clothes. The irritation still raging, I decided I needed to pray. My house was clean, but my heart was dirty.  I sat down and began praying. Quickly God showed me the heart issue going on inside me. The reason I was the only one cleaning wildly is because I was the one who cared if the house was clean.  I was the one worried about being judged for a messy home.

Measuring my worth by the wrong standard...again! When will I learn? God gently whispered to my soul that I am His dearly beloved. That my worth came from Him alone, not from how clean my house is. I felt the anxiety leave my body. I was still God's beloved. I belong to Him. Why do I continue to need to be reminded?

"Tell me once again, who I am in you...who I am in you. Tell me, lest I forget, who I am in you, I belong to you."  - Jason Gray, Remind Me Who I Am

I am thankful for a God who continues to remind me of my worth in Him.

What do you do to keep reminding yourself that you belong to God?

Kelly Combs is a Christian wife, mom, writer and speaker. You can learn about Kelly by visiting her website at

Chatty Kelly


Kathryn Bruce Hughey said...

I love your post, probably because I know I would do the exact same thing in that situation! I know that I tend to look for my worth in how well I take care of my husband and 15 month daughter. If my husband starts cleaning something (because he is HELPING me), I feel a blow to my heart, because I feel I was not good enough at keeping the house clean so he could relax when he is at home. Ridiculous I know! I too have to be reminded on a constant basis that my worth is found in the Lord and only in Him! Thanks for the reminder!

Kelly Combs said...

Kathryn, I totally get what you're saying. When my husband says, "I put in a load of laundry for you, because I saw it was piling up." To him, it says, "I am helping you because I love you." To me? It says, "You miserable excuse for a wife, can't you even keep up with the laundry?"
God has been showing me more and more to stop basing my worth on a check list of items, but to simple realize my worth ONLY is a child of God. It is hard to get to this place, but it is a very comfortable place to be! I just have to tell myself DAILY that I am His beloved, and that is all that matters.

Thank you for sharing your story. God bless.

Sue J said...

Sometimes what we do takes over who we are. We are what we do. And, as you say, we are because He made us. He gave us things to do, which is important, but what is most important? This reads like a modern-day "Martha" story for sure, and it happens when we get consumed by our works. How great that you knew to turn to Him in prayer? That irritation of yours could have carried straight over into your introductions, and that would have gotten your relationship off to a tough start. So, good for you!

Kari Scare said...

I understand this completely. When I worked out of the home this was more of a problem because I had less control over how my house looked. Well, less time to do anything about it anyway. Now that I work at home, I keep it pretty neat because I am there a lot. It's sort of like how I always kept my workspace neat at the office. Over time, I have started to worry less over what others think of my house or appearance. Instead, I focus on being me and expressing who I am. Maybe it's maturity. Maybe it's different relationships. I do know it's an on purpose approach to focusing on what's more important. I am better at this some days than others. On good days, I am in touch with who I am in Christ and what He wants and other things seem to just fade away. On bad days, I focus on the temporal. Sounds like it's more of a focus problem now that I think about it.