The “Sweep”

My heart has been smitten like grass and has withered away. Indeed, I forget to eat my bread.     Psalm 102:4

12.13.18 The Sweep Pixabay

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A control freak at heart, I’ve always been the one to move about the house putting everything back in its place. It calms me to look around and see things neat and orderly in an otherwise chaotic world. But in a household of five, that task is almost a full-time job.

So, when I went back to work a few weeks ago, the house fell into complete disarray. Seeing the clutter everywhere when I got home from work pushed me over the edge.

I won’t bore you with the gory details, but suffice it to say, there was A LOT of yelling and throwing of lunch boxes, as well as shoes and coats (with me doing all the yelling and throwing). Clearly, I wasn’t being the mom I wanted to be. But my kids weren’t being the kids I wanted and needed them to be either. So I invented the “Sweep.”

Three times a day, morning, after school, and bedtime, each child has to wander around the house looking for all the items they’ve left strewn about. If they don’t retrieve them and put them where they belong, there are rigid consequences (to include me throwing things out or locking them up for an extended period of time). My house has never looked so great!

Delegating this task to my kids has freed up some time for me to be doing my own Sweep. As you would imagine, a lot of my prayer time and good intentions got left by the wayside during this back-to-work adjustment period.

It’s time for me to wander around my own life, looking for the things I’ve left behind. I need to pick them back up and either decide they’re not a priority any longer and let them go, or find the place in my days were they can fit and belong.

When life gets busier, our priorities become more clear. I know there will never be enough time to fit in all we want to do. But for the things we need to do, like prayer to rejuvenate and refill us, God will always guide us on how to make it happen, if we ask Him.

Questions for Reflection:

     * Who sweeps through my house and puts everything back in its place – me or my kids? Is this a task I can delegate to my kids?

    * What life-giving things have I left by the wayside when life gets busy? Can I make a Sweep through my own life and put these important things back in place?

6 thoughts on “The “Sweep”

  1. I used to do a “floor check” with my kids. It was basically the same thing you explained here. I don’t know why the practice fell by the wayside. Thanks for the reminder to reinstitute, and add the “lock up” portion. That is brilliant, and I hadn’t thought of that before. 🎄


    • Great minds think alike, Jean! But isn’t it amazing how hard it is to keep great plans in action? We’ll see how long I remember to enforce the “Sweep.” I’m hoping that because I reap the benefits of this one, I’ll remain consistent. 🙂


    • Oh ABSOLUTELY!!! My technique for him is I “sweep” up all his stuff and put it in his bathroom sink. He then can’t use the sink until he puts everything away. So far it’s working like a charm! It’s a slight variation, but the end result is the same. 🙂


  2. Haha! You are quite the problem solver! I laughed out loud at your solution to “sweeping up” John’s stuff. So clever 😉
    Good luck with your new job!!


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