Why I do laundry and enjoy it.

I know, it sounds like a strange statement for anyone to say. You’re probably thinking, “Laundry? What? How could you possibly enjoy that chore at all. It’s a bore, a tedium, a terrible date of every week that drains precious time!”

I like laundry for the same reasons I enjoy to cook and am learning to enjoy washing dishes. (At my house, loading the dishwasher means I get to eat something.) As a minister, my job is fairly open-ended. Love people and help them grow closer to Jesus Christ. Sure, I have my own ideas about what that looks like, but going in, it’s a touch daunting. Not only that, because I work with children, whom I love dearly, I may not get to see the results of my efforts for years. And because I work with volunteers, I may not get to see the change in their lives for years, either. Basically, I get to leave my job every day going, “Well, God, I did what I could. Hope it worked.” And I have to let Him handle the rest.

I imagine this is similar to how parents feel at the end of the day. The kids have been fed, homework has been finished, and they’ve been tucked in, and as the door to that child’s room closes, “Well, God, I did what I could. Hope it worked.” And you know He’ll handle the rest.

These menial tasks let me have the satisfaction of something done. I can see the stack of neatly folded clothes and think, “I know that’s done.” I can taste the result of a few hours preparing a homemade stew and think, “I know that’s done.” But as for my vocation, what God has called me to do, I have to wait for the very end, when I see Jesus face to face to think, “I know that’s done.”

As parents, I hope you know that I can see the little things you do in your children’s lives. I see the love, affection, sleepless nights, crazy weekends, and hectic schedules. I see that your children are growing closer to Jesus. Some take longer than others, and those tend to grasp it the best. God has blessed me in that I get to go home after every event or weekend service and think, “These are fantastic kids. God, take care of them.” Regardless of what else happens, I know I’ll be able to say that.

Keep it up, parents. Play for keeps. Be present with your kids. Even if you may not see it, I can, and you are making an impact on your families.