When energy and food prices began rising earlier this year, I decided I needed a clothesline to offset some of the household costs. Little did I know hanging laundry would be exactly what my weary soul needed.
It’s been many years since I had a clothesline. I used to line dry our cloth diapers, but eventually gave that up (and even eventually gave up cloth diapering altogether) when my life became too busy with tiny people to be frugal in that way.
When we moved to this house 3 years ago, I was in a brand new place in life – no babies – and I began to reconsider things I had given up, like baking bread and hanging laundry on a clothesline.
Stepping back into bread baking was easy, but without a good place to put up a clothesline, I wasn’t sure I’d ever be hanging laundry again.
However, we have a small deck off the living room that is attached by a narrow walkway to our main deck, and I was certain a clothesline could be rigged up there. Sure enough, with a little creativity and a family friend, we hung this retractable clothesline diagonally across the deck and back again, making 2 glorious lines to hang laundry from!
In my mind, it was all about frugality. I was making a good financial choice that would hopefully save us a bit of money as a return on the investment of my time.
Never did I expect hanging laundry to become a balm to my weary soul.
Doing laundry and hanging it out on a clothesline slows me down. It forces me to load up the clothes in a basket, go outside, and methodically and systematically hang and pin over and over again.
This rather mindless act of homemaking creates space in my life that is usually taken up by a flurry of activity and efficiency, moving from one task to the next with frenetic speed.
But once I begin pinning clothes to the clothesline, I am slowed. I am calm and quiet. There is no multi-tasking, no checking my phone, no hurrying on to the next thing. It is truly a moment of being still and abiding in the Lord’s path for my life.
As I watch the laundry flutter in the breeze, I find myself relaxing into this seemingly insignificant aspect of homemaking. It is as if everything in my life slows down. And as I slow down, I find space in which to worship my Creator.
Hanging laundry is not only frugal. It is worshipful.
Have you ever noticed that it is in the small things, we find the most time for life and love and abiding in Christ? It is the very things that “slow us down” – like nursing a baby, washing dishes by hand, or hanging laundry – that create the most room for worship.
They are the quiet places of our lives. The opposites of our usual racing to be efficient and do all the things. They are the margin and whitespace we long for.
But do we even see it? Or do we plod along through these monotonous tasks mindlessly missing the blessings they are, wishing these mundane moments away?
For me, that is usually the case, but for some reason I didn’t miss this moment.
In the cool of the morning, with my phone left inside, it was just me and the laundry and the Lord. And it was beautiful and healing.
After watching 2020 melt into 2021, and then shaken awake to a startling 2022, my mind and body needed the steady abiding of homemaking and homeschooling and following Christ wholeheartedly – no distractions, no busyness, no trying too hard.
I needed the quiet clip of clothespins on a clothesline to create the rhythm and routine of a life filled with worship once again.
Is it time for you to slow your pace and worship?
Try these things…
- Rocking a little one
- Petting an animal
- Hanging laundry
- Washing dishes by hand
- Mopping a floor by hand
- Taking a leisurely walk
- Walking barefoot through the grass
- Planting flowers or vegetables
- Giving baths to your little ones
- Watching a bird feeder
- Taking a Sunday drive
- Kneading bread by hand
- Sweeping the porch
- Sitting in a child’s room at night
Consider any task that feels like it takes “too much time” and turn it into an opportunity to worship!
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