Intentional Living: Getting Started

“And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance; for you serve the Lord Christ.” Colossians 3:23-24

I am not a born organizer.  I wish that I was, but the fact remains that I’m not.  However I cannot use that as an excuse when my desire is to maintain an orderly and clutter-free home.  It simply doesn’t come as naturally to me as it does to some others.  That is why I love resources from other people who are gifted at that type of thing, and then I can just implement their ideas! I love learning from other people. One of the blessings of pre-baby was being able to work in many people’s homes and observe the way they manage their household. I learned lots of helpful tips on cooking, housekeeping, child-rearing, etc. and I kind of made a mental bookmark of each idea to use when the time came.  I read as many books, blogs, listen to radio programs as I can to learn as much as I can in this area.  So pretty much anything you ever see me doing, I got the idea from someone else!

On my journey to learn to live intentionally, I have borrowed heavily from Lindsay’s Passionate Homemaking blog. I cannot recommend this resource enough! She is such a godly, gospel-centered woman seeking to be used for the kingdom in her home. Many of the ideas I will share are a modification of her own ideas and suggestions. I have found it especially helpful when she shares what she has been reading to aid in her pursuit of gospel-centered homemaking.  I also love any tutorial videos she puts up so that I can really see how she does what she does (especially when she is teaching me how to make things in the kitchen that seem so foreign to me!).

One of the most important things to remember in your journey to intentional living is that you will not do it perfectly. The ideal that whatever we do we must do with perfection has discouraged so many of us from doing the right thing, myself included. The beautiful truth is, God knows we aren’t perfect, and we never will be on this earth. Everything we do, we will fail at in some way, shape or form. The amazing truth is that we have a great High Priest who knows and sympathizes with our weaknesses.  Scripture tells us the even “Jesus grew in wisdom and stature” (Luke 2:52).  Growing in knowledge and ability is part of maturing, and it is a God-honoring process. The ideal that if we cannot do something perfectly, we won’t do it at all, is not God-honoring.  If we allow intentional living, simplifying our lives, and keeping our home organized to take priority over obeying God in loving and caring for others, we have missed the point. The goal is to free ourselves more to do the work of the Lord.  We do not have to do all of this perfectly; we simply have to seek to glorify God in all we say and do and He will honor that and recognize in humility that we will make mistakes.

Being able to accept this truth has been a turning point in my pursuit of orderly and restful homemaking. I have been driven not by guilt or condemnation, but by the pure joy of seeking to glorify God and be used for his kingdom. And walking alongside others on this journey, gleaning from their insight, experience, and wisdom, has been so beneficial.

I love delayed gratification on things like desserts and surprises.  But I hate delaying the gratification of getting my home in order!  However, slowly implementing tips as well as giving yourself time (even months in some cases!) to take stock of your routines, how quickly you go through certain items, etc. is vital to succeeding! When I first started, I grew discouraged because I wasn’t where Lindsay (at passtionatehomemaking.com) was at right now.  But I had to take a step back and remember, she’s already been at this for a couple of years! It takes time to organize menus, develop routines, and create a housekeeping binder. Take heart and give yourself time and grace as you set on this mission!

Because I love details, and when I am doing something new, I need an abundance of detail to catch on, I will seek to share as openly and informatively as possible.  However, when I am sharing examples of my daily routines or menu planning, remember, these are only examples.  What I do is not necessarily what you should do. Do not be tricked into feeling condemned and judged if you see something I do and it doesn’t work for you.  There is much liberty to tweak, adjust, and simply forgo anything that I post about! I simply want to encourage, inspire, and enable so many women (like me!) who know what they want to do, but don’t know how to get there.

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One response to this post.

  1. Posted by Nana on May 3, 2011 at 10:15 pm

    Proud of you, as always! Looking forward to reading about what God and Lindsay (in that order 🙂 have been teaching you. And I know I will learn a few things as well!

    Reply

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