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Faith Imagined: Striving Laundry: Guest Post for Writer's Manna

Faith Imagined

Alisa Hope Wagner: Christian Writer

August 25, 2010

Striving Laundry: Guest Post for Writer's Manna

I'm doing a guest post over at Writer's Manna, authored by Heather Spiva! I hope it encourages you today!

I have been anxiously striving to finish edits on my first book. My mind has been consumed with writing, and I’m constantly telling myself to get to work. I feel the pressure of a deadline, and I told God one afternoon, “I can’t wait until I’m done.”

I could sense God smile and say, “Then you’ll start your second book.”

I stopped in my tracks. I realized that I will never be finished. When I’m done climbing this mountain, God will have another one for me in the distance. While I’m alive on this earth, God will always place promises for my life in the horizon.

God places promises beyond each of us; and as we move closer to them, God is able to mold us into the likeness of His son. Promises are in the core of Jesus; they pull us toward Him like gravity and slowly perfect us into our original design.

At that moment, I had a reality check. Obviously my perspective was wrong because God would not want me to be anxious about anything (Philippians 4.6).

How do we strive towards God’s promises without becoming overwhelmed? How do we find balance and joy in a life that will always be pulled toward higher goals and greater accomplishments?

I would like to answer this profound question with one simple word: Laundry.

Laundry is never done. Whenever I go from room to room with arms filled with dirty clothes, I like to sing the theme song to the 1984 movie The NeverEnding Story. If that story were written by a woman, I am sure it would have been about laundry.

I’ve learned to do a little bit of laundry every day. I don’t even think about it anymore. When I wake up, I’ll notice that the hamper is getting full, so I’ll grab the clothes and start a load. That afternoon after I put the kids down for a nap, I’ll put the clothes into the dryer and forget about them. While the kids are playing before bed, I’ll take the load out, fold it and put it away. Never once was I anxious.

I used to let the laundry build up, but I noticed that I always became anxious. The lack of clean clothes would begin to affect my life, and my mind would send me distracting signals to “get to work.” Laundry would become a big deal, when, in reality, it is such a small part of my life. If I would simply give laundry a fraction of my attention every day, it would be manageable.

This concept is the same for God’s promises. God doesn’t want His promises to become anxiety builders in our lives. His promises are supposed to draw us closer in relationship with Him. The imbalance comes when we stop daily focusing on God, and we let our relationship with Him build up, unused in the hamper.

If we hungrily seek God everyday and align our lives in His will, He would ensure that we have just enough time every day to work on His promises. As we seek God, He will groom our lives of everything unnecessary, and we will have perfect amount of time to complete His will. Also, when we focus on God, He will fill us with joy and peace that will filter through every aspect of our lives, dispersing our anxiety, worry and procrastination.

The purpose of life is to glorify God. If we are not doing that in our daily life, we probably need to ask God for a healthy dose of perspective. I decided to give up on striving; instead, I’m keeping my eyes on God and allowing His grace to move me toward His best for me.

"Cease striving and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth” (Psalm 46.10 NASB).

You can also check out this article here!

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Blogger Stuff could always be worse said...

As always, love this article. Love the laundry perspective

3:30 PM  
Blogger Penny said...

What a great perspective and visual. Next time I see my hamper I'm going to make sure I haven't stuffed God in there! LOL!

love this and love you!

your sis in the faith,

5:39 PM  
Blogger Family, Money and Stuff said...

Hi Alisa! Left a comment at Writer's Manna.

You got me - have you been spying on me? It's a wonder you could see past all my laundry piles! :)

7:31 PM  
Blogger Michelle said...

Well now, I can't go over and read the rest right now because I seriously DO need to do some laundry!

But I look forward to visiting and reading it soon!

It was great to have you visit, Alisa! I was thinking of your Twitter post earlier about focusing on Christ while being in the center of it all!

Have a blessed night!

7:47 PM  
Blogger Amy Sullivan said...

Bouncing over to writer's manna now! I can so relate to this already...

8:30 PM  
OpenID bluecottonmemory said...

If you need more perspective, I've got plenty of laundry! LOL - I've found that one step at a time, stopping obsessive thinking - laundry doesn't do it for me - too many white socks to match! Knitting does.

10:04 PM  
Blogger Karen said...

Wonderful post Alisa! It is so easy to get caught up in striving to finish a project that perspective is lost in the process. Thank you for encouraging us to keep the right perspective and stop striving. May we all rest in the Lord, knowing that He will enable us to do all that He has called us to do; remembering that His timing is always perfect.

7:36 AM  
Blogger Spring M Fricks said...

Loved your post. And, how true. I can't wait to find out more about your book!

8:53 AM  
Blogger LittleWomen21 said...

I get your posts by subscription so I don't usually get around to commenting, but I should more. Because they are wonderful! In fact I couldn't resist linking to this in my latest post. Thank you for the gentle inspiration of the never-ending laundry.

1:17 PM  
Blogger Michael Manning said...

I like Karen's comment here, along with your great post. I feel blessed to be able to see Grace in others. That is where people really shine! Have a wonderful weekend!!


10:36 PM  
Blogger Karen Lange said...

Will head over, thanks! Love the comparison with the laundry. Need to tackle more projects like that:)

7:01 PM  
Blogger D.J. Hughes said...

Great post! I think we can all relate to the laundry saga too. It is truly, as you say, never-ending! And what a fitting analogy as you've used it here. Yes, when we are finished with the current task that God has placed before us, then we will simply move forward to the next task He has for us. Your words are a great reminder to be at peace with the process instead of anxiously waiting for some miraculous ending site. Thanks!


7:06 PM  
Blogger Jennifer Smith said...

OMGoodness! I love this analogy!

5:30 PM  
Blogger Reign and Shine said...

Thank you for rolling this together. I had made the realization there is always another challenge or mile marker ahead. I hadn't put together the daily aspect of walking with God.
Who hasn't worked @ keeping up with family and didn't realize laundry is neverending? Dirty clothes. Dirty dishes. Dirty bathrooms. Dirty faces and dirty feet. Everyday. Need to be a part of everyday.
Thx for pointing us to God.

2:14 PM  

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