I thought before the media fast started (week four – beginning this Monday), I would share with you what I have decided to do for the personal fast (week five). I’ve put a lot of thought into it. The trickiest thing about this fast is the fact that it’s the week leading up to Easter. Not only is that one of the busiest, most stressful weeks of my life, but there are also several family gatherings to attend (think good food that I want to eat). I wanted to pick something that would be challenging but not take away from the activities at hand. Before I share with you what I decided, let me tell you about the fasts that I decided not to do. I call them the rejected fasts:
- Caffeinated Soda – No caffeine in my system the week before Eggstravaganza and the day of… that just sounds like a recipe for a slow, tired, cranky Amy if you ask me.
- No Hot Water – I started to think about all the people who shower using rain water that they’ve collected. I thought about people who can’t even drink their water… I am sad to admit that I don’t have the guts to take cold showers all week.
- 7 Personal Hygiene Products – I use a lot of products in the morning that keep me clean, smelling good and my hair from looking like I stuck my finger in an electrical socket. I thought about paring down my supplies to just 7 items, but this proved to be too hard without giving myself freebies. I couldn’t decide that I needed more than the others. Shallow, I know!
- No Heaters – I thought about not heating our home for the week to save on electricity, but also to be like others in the world who don’t have heated homes. I realized that Jeremy would have to choose this fast as well since it would affect not only me. We briefly talked about turning our power off (except for the fridge), but yet again, cold showers the week of Easter just didn’t sound so good.
Now, I might get made fun of for the fast I have chosen. However, if you know me, you know that this will be a sacrifice. I have decided to not clean my house the entire week. I’m sure some of you think that is no big deal, but I am OCD. I live in a spotless house. I have light carpets that show everything and I vacuum a LOT. Here is a look at my weekly cleaning schedule:
- Monday: Sweep kitchen floors, sweep entry way floors, vacuum entire house, do general tidying.
- Tuesday: Nothing but the usually wiping down counters and doing laundry.
- Wednesday: Wash ALL towels and blankets in my home (fold and put away), sweep and mop all floors, vacuum the entire house, clean both bathrooms, dust the entire house, empty all trash cans, Lysol the entire house, spray Febreze on approved surfaces.
- Thursday: The usual tidying – nothing major, just maintaining the clean from the day before.
- Friday/Saturday/Sunday: One of these days I will sweep all the floors, vacuum the entire house and do the general tidying and laundry. Sometimes I will do the floors two days in a row if they look bad.
As you can tell, I put a lot of time and energy into keeping my home clean. It’s something I struggle with. I know that some people get uncomfortable with how clean my house is, so I’ll leave it intentionally messier when I know they are coming over. I’m crazy I know! I realize this…
This week, I will allow myself to wipe down the counters, use the dishwasher and wash clothing. I will not do anything else in my normal routine. I will have to work hard against the guilt of not cleaning. I will feel the urge to clean a lot. I’m hoping that by freeing myself from my cleaning schedule, I can do three things:
- Put more time and energy into my job (preparing for Easter Eggstravaganza and Easter services)
- Enjoy more down time at home. Instead of feeling like I have to clean, when I am home I can spend time resting, spend time with Jesus, and spend time with my hubby.
- Remember that I am blessed by my home and that others in the world would think I live in a palace. Dirty to me doesn’t even come close to what these people live in. I will remember those who live in the streets, in the garbage dumps, and the sewers. I will try not to freak out over a speck of dirt, because I am truly blessed beyond what I can fully comprehend.