Organizing my home and family doesn’t come naturally to me … but with some helpful insight, I can get on the right track!
For years, I fooled my husband into thinking I was an organized wife.
For the record, I am more organized than he is. When he saw my neat rooms and paperwork filed away in our filing cabinet, he just assumed I was organized.
But I’m not. At least not at heart. And when I became a work-at-home, homeschooling mom, my unorganized tendencies surprised him.
I never intended on a Jekyll and Hyde sort of transformation, but one of the things that helped me keep our home organized, pre-kids, was all of the extra time I could spend caring for our home.
When that time was gone, so was my time to organize.
Plus, two little people now were following my trail, getting out toys and papers right after I picked them up.
For the past six years, I’ve known I’ve needed help when it comes to managing my time – and especially when it comes to organizing my home and family. So I was intrigued to read Shannon Upton’s book, Building Your House: A Faithful Mom’s Guide to Organizing Home and Family.
I was so surprised at how much I loved it. Upton encouraged me to keep building my home – and for the majority of the book, I felt affirmed in what I’ve been doing as a keeper of my home.
“As Jesus Moms, we’re not doing the work because we want to check off to-do list items or impress others. We’re doing the best we possibly can to build our homes for the love of our families and the love of our Lord.”
Then, through her encouraging words, the Lord really started to speak to me on what is wrong in my home – and how I’ve been unintentionally tearing it down instead of building it up:
“Part of building your home with both hands is figuring out how you might inadvertently be tearing it down. No single part of your day should persistently annoy you or involve a stressful battle. A day in the life of your family is actually a set of routines, some great and some not so great, one right after the other. When you identify the not-so-great parts, you can make them better.”
As I’ve shared before, I struggle with consistent routines. And I feel the weight of it in my spirit. This book convicted me of the need to set routines and to keep them with myself – and my children.
“Our God of peace created us to enjoy order – we’re made in His image,” Upton writes. “No matter where you are on the structure spectrum, you’ll benefit from well-designed routines. Just as orderly worship builds up the church, orderly homes build up the family. Fitting and orderly routines can give consistency to your home and peace to your heart.”
This book came at the right time for me – right when I’ve been focused on establishing better routines in my home and for my family. The great thing is that Building Your House helped walk me through the steps I need to take.
As Upton shares, “Your home isn’t a problem to solve. It’s a set of systems to be managed.”
As part of my routine, I’m going to slowly and purposely begin to declutter my house as a way to get rid of the stuff that I just don’t want or need.
(I love Upton’s insight: “As Jesus Moms, our priorities are crystal clear: love the Lord, love our families, and love others. Loving stuff is not on the short list.”)
I may never become truly, truly organized. It may take me months to work my way through my house – and that’s if I’m persistent in my culling.
But as long as I’m pursuing this work in progress, I’ll be content.
And as long as I can help my children establish proper systems and routines in their own loves, I’ll be happy that I’m building my house instead of tearing it down. In the process, I can create a haven to bless myself … and my family.
As you’re organizing your home and family, what works best for you? What are some secrets you can share?
Disclosure: I don’t know Shannon and was not paid to endorse this book. I was, however, provided with a free copy and asked for my honest opinion. Purchasing the book through links in this post will result in a commission for Home to a Haven. Thank you for supporting this website!