Where Is the Beauty in Doing Chores?

My dishes have been piling up for days!

It's a chore both my husband and I dread, and it's become like a game of chicken as we wait each other out until one of us breaks the stalemate, usually when we run out of forks!

Today, though, I chose to take a new view on doing dishes. I mentally listed all the things that are beautiful about it during the task.

  • We only have two people in the house using dishes regularly, yet we have 18 ceramic plates of varying sizes, 50+ durable utensils, 12 soup or salad bowls, and over 25 glasses. Abundance is beautiful.
  • We live in a house that has a dedicated space with a double sink and counter space to stack dirty dishes. Having a kitchen under a roof is beautiful.
  • All of the plates, bowls, cutting boards and knives that need to be washed means that we had food that was prepared and made into meals. And when the dishes pile up quickly, that just goes to show that whenever we were hungry, we got to eat. Having plenty of food at your fingertips is beautiful.
  • As I began the chore, I needed to soak and rinse some items as they were covered with quite a bit of dried food. I lifted the handle on my faucet and clear, clean water came out. I rotated the handle to the left and the water's temperature began to increase until I had steam billowing up into my face. Clean water, running water, and hot water, especially all at once, is beautiful.
  • After rinsing when needed, I placed the various pieces into my dishwasher that is built into the cabinet space under the counter. There are two racks that have specially molded tines and prongs to accommodate the shape of various dishes. The racks are on wheels so I can bring them out to load and push them back when I'm ready to close the door. With its many settings, the machine lets me choose which cycle to run, depending on the contents. When the baskets are full, there is a soap dispenser to fill with a detergent pod that will be released at just the right time to scour the items. And my dishwasher isn't broken, so I can push the Start button and walk away confident that upon my return, the dishes will be sparkling clean. Automation and convenience is beautiful.

What beauty can be found in other chores? 

As you approach these tasks, can you be intentional about examining the details to uncover the beauty at the core?

I still don't like to do dishes, but with my new perspective, I can come to it with gratitude in my heart instead of resentment, and that gives it meaning and purpose beyond the obligation.

Here are a couple of doorways from my week:
  • As I was leaving the house, I saw a man walking on the side of the road in the subdivision. When I got closer, I could see that he was wearing a pack on his chest that held his young daughter (presumably). I smiled as I thought of the love being shown as the child enjoyed the autumn morning in the comfort of her father's care.
  • Last week's blog post, Beauty on the Bad Days, was a personal risk for me, and like anyone who makes themselves vulnerable, I was a little nervous on how others would respond. However, I was encouraged and validated by several generous comments (on FB and in person), making my risk another facet of beauty.


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