Welcome to my eclectic journey of my life and delights. This year my theme is surrendering my writing pen to the true author, Jesus Christ, while looking forward to the future, reflecting on the past and dancing through my journey.

Friday, April 20, 2012

My Way or the Highway

I was caught in my tracks, yes totally blindsided with convictions, as my mind had to choose between the right and the wrong way to handle the situation.  I heard the words, "My WAY or the Highway!" yelled in my head...the choice was mine.  "MY WAY"...wow!, that alone should be a clue of the arrogance in my own self-worth.

Our dryer bit-the-bullet.  Now why it decided to leave the family without proper provision for drying our clothes, after I had just given it a face lift (painted my dryer on my laundry re-do) I will never know.  Didn't it know what a pain it would be to not have its services and how removing my art work would mess up my decor?

So began our journey of "no dryer".  As my husband debated on if to fix or buy a used one...well he is more the Tim Allen type so buying a used one would be safer....he generously offered to take the clothes, after I had washed them, to the laundry mat, a couple of loads at a time.  Now in our household I am the house manager, even decades ago, with four children under age 7, home schooling and running my own business, I still remained the home manger doing all chores that pertained to the home and yard.  So it is a huge deal when my working husband offers to take on any of the list of chores.  I didn't even think twice about not taking him up on the offer....the sacrifice would be...he would be doing it his way.  His way is inexperienced and how he remembers his mom folded clothes....not how his wife has done laundry for 32 years, but a servant heart should not be discouraged.

As the baskets returned I had some choices to make

  • I could re-fold all the clothes to my liking...which meant extra work and voiced - "your way is not right"...now lets be honest, there isn't a "right" way and a "wrong" way of folding clothes, if the mission is complete than the method is right
  • I could reminded him that the way he is doing it is not my way, therefore discouraging his efforts, leaving him with the choice of getting mad or just not doing it
  • I could rejoice in the fact that I am not the one going down to the laundry mat...that folded clothes are better than unfolded wrinkled clothes...and this too would pass and I would be back at the task of laundry, by myself, when the dryer issue was resolved
This is when I caught myself hearing "MY WAY OR THE HIGHWAY".  I am happy to say the conviction penetrated deeply.  I rejoiced over the folded clothes...put them all way and remembered that "my way" isn't necessarily "right".

How many times have I discouraged my own children or husband by mentioning how they did it "wasn't right"?  That could have been verbally, or through my actions of re-doing their efforts, or even expressions of discontent.  As Benjamin learns to make his bed I remember my policy with my other children...let them learn at their skill level and don't re-do what they have done.  He so proudly makes his bed each morning...his skill level will improve and "his way is right"....mission accomplished, bed made.

May we encourage the "servant heart" in our families and stop looking to see if they did it "our way".   Who wants to help a "know it all...that can't be pleased"person..that produces  you standing there without a helping hand, ALONE to do it "your way".

Yes, I would put this post under "reality check"....there are more to come....seems I am in the shop for a tune-up.

28 Joining in with more words:

Mary said...

Yep, too many " my way or the highway's" tend to come back and bit us in the but...as well as it not being all about me!!

You must paint the new dryer!!!

Debbie said...

Oh Janette...first sorry to hear about the dryer...my oldest son's wife is dealing with this dilemma too, and with 5 kids at home it is a HUGE problem. And second, can I ever relate. I learned years ago that I am somewhat of a fanatic when it comes to housewoerk, and few can meaasure up to my ridiculous expectations....soooo, I learned to keep my lips sealed or I would have never gotten any help. This worked just fine in the kitchen when the kids did the dishes. I knew I'd be in the kitchen the next morning anyway, and I could wipe things in my own OVER done way etc. But the laundry? Oh my....this would have taken HUGE effort..haha. I am soo particular about how things are smoothed and folded and done....I always just had to do it myself. It was like someone else was controlling me, lol. Unfornately I did teach Mel to be as particular as me in this area (I tried REALLY hard for this not to happen...honest) and a couple of my son'a wives have accused them of being ridiculous over wrinkles (or their need for lack of them)and they have been known to say quite annoyingly, "MY mom never had wrinkles". Needless to say, I think this wonderful that you are keeping silent and appreciating the help. I'm not sure I could, haha.

Vee said...

Nice message, Janette. One that I must remind myself of often even as my darling is doing the dishes. I know that they are not going to put away in their proper places. Do I care? Not so much anymore.

Our refrigerator went on the fritz a few weeks ago. We had the repairman out and it was pricey. We won't go that route again. We just Googled the problem, came up with the solution and the part (for a fraction of the cost at the appliance store) and John did it himself. It works great. Win-win! Gotta love the internet.

momto8 said...

Unfortunately..I completely understand this post!! and I too have to bite my tongue, which I am not very good at...or just walk away...beacuse I like the pillows arranged just so, the food labels facing me, the hangers all the same way....and no one else could care one bit....so I take the help and usually end up doing it my way anyway!!
I am our newest follower..pls follow back if you can.

LDH said...

You did good, girlfriend! I know the mental and heart process well :)

Christine said...

This reminds me of "events" in my life. Your words are so encouraging.

Jenna M said...

Once again you hit the nail on the head! Just enjoy the gifts as they come, don't get all fussy in the way they are wrapped! I soooo want to rewrap my gifts so they look "just so" ! I'm so busy as it is.... Why would I make more work for myself???? Thanks for placing this in my face. :)

Farm Girl said...

Wow so very true, do you know what I am thankful about at this age? That you thought it through, 30 years ago we would have refolded the clothes Or I would have, I would have pointed out how he had done it not my way.
Wow this one nails me between the eyes. We are going to plant our garden together. I will remember this as I want to do things "my way," Because I am afraid he will catch the highway part of my attitude.
Wow, just in the nick of time too. :)

Kathryn Ross said...

Ouch! Been there and done that - though after years of my fellow folding towels so all the sloppy ends show. I waited for a teachable moment and slipped in a tutorial to the purpose. He laughed. So, I'm back to re-folding them when he's at work. The inside-out tops I leave as is now. Just so thankful he is as domestic as he is and gets up at 4:30am to do chores and quiet time before work. He won't quit - says it's "his way" - I'm not arguing when it smooths my way. I think it's his love language and I won't take that from him!

Be ye blessed with a nice new energy efficient dryer! Bet the washer will follow soon - just sayin'!

Thoughts for the day said...

That is just so funny, what hint to get the clothes dried. You have to have humor for sure.

Ma said...

"my way" isn't necessarily right. Thank you Janette, I need to remember this

Debbie said...

I loved this, and I have had the whole "my way or the highway" flesh a time or twenty too. I'm so proud of you for listening to the Spirit and rejoicing in the gift of his time.

And I'm so sorry about the dryer. You know that I understand those unexpected things very, very well.
Let's just pray for a new one, and when you get it, I hope you paint it too.

Theresa said...

Ouch! I always refold the shirts when my daughter folds them to one side and I like them to the other side. I think it goes back to when I was in high school and worked at JCPenney. All of the hangers and items on them had to face to the left. Maybe I should just praise her for folding them.
Have a great weekend :)

Sue said...

Have I got some good news for you tonight, the older you get the less it matters. LOL I loved loved this post. maybe because I have been there done that.
I am so sorry about your dryer, had a similar experience recently, even went to good ole' Sears and picked out a new one, but wasn't satisfied in my spirit, as it is a little tuff right now for going into debt. Dh was led to call a guy, and we got it fixed for 65.00 Thank the Lord!
Always such a joy to visit you. Give Benjamin a hug for me, and please tell him I think of you both so often especially when I touch my little pigs and pillow.~smile~
Enjoy your weekend.

Petra said...

This made me laugh. Has your husband been with you so long that he remembers his mother's ways? Men! Gotta love 'em! I feel like I'm in the shop for a complete overhaul lately, as well. Blessings!

Angela said...

You're right. It's so easy to discourage others, and put a damper on their spirit. I've been on the other end of this, too, so I try to remember that when my husband loads the dishwasher differently :) Hope you get a dryer soon :)

Sue Anne McKinney said...

yikes, that hit home!

Lea also known as "CiCi" said...

Oh, that struck a huge nerve with me for sure. Just this week as we are traveling Hubby doesn't pack the vehicle as I think it should be packed. I have a method and I think my method is the only way but the bottom line is, the car is packed and it is NOT a big deal. You are so right, there is no right way to pack a car either. :o) Thanks for the wonderful reminder! Happy weekend!

Lisa said...

Oh, Janette. All I can say is "OUCH!" LOL!

Tanna at The Brick Street Bungalow said...

A lesson I could use over and over, Janette!! THANK YOU!! blessings ~ tanna


. . . but I like my way. :-)

Crown of Beauty said...

Hi Janette,
This is a such a beautiful post... and what a great lesson you have learned through a dryer that has stopped working. It seems as if God really had it all planned out.

How graciously you handled it... is what I have really admired.

As we progress in years (ha!) we will find out that we can really choose our battles. And really, you are so right - clothes not folded the way we want it is not a battle to fight at this point of the journey.

You have shared this lesson well, and I am happy to have dropped by today when I did!

Happy Spring, dear friend.


So, I Begin this Journey...... said...

Janette...thank you (as always) for this reminder!!
I've felt the steering wheel as I read this post..... my way has taken a different route!
Loved the post!

Brenda Lazzaro Yoder, said...

Thanks for the reminder. For years it was my way or the highway, and they were very tumultuous years. Then I wrestled with the Lord for a really long time, and letting His way be the way is sure much better. Thanks for your post.

Susan (My Place to Yours) said...

Why, oh why, are we sometimes so hard-headed? Even though I've learned to (usually) hold my tongue, I'm often still guilty of letting out a loud sign of exasperation. That's just as bad, huh? Good reminder -- and good choice, my friend! (So sorry about the washer, and I'm praying for provision for you.)

Cecilia Marie Pulliam said...

A very good post, Janette. I have been the same way, very particular how things were done. When my husband and I married, he offered split the household chores fifty-fifty since we were both working. I had to relinquish some control to make it work. Of course, I am lucky, the man is as much of a clean freak as I am and just as precise with his cleaning, but there were some areas of concern, my laundry I cannot trust him with. He washes everything in hot water and on high in the dryer, but relinquishing everything else into his capable hands was a great relief, especially since he is retired now and managing ALL household chores - except my laundry.

Hope your dryer issue is resolved soon!

Glenda said...

A very timely reminder! I've been in the "repair shop" lately, too...getting much needed "tune-ups"! I'm glad Someone cares enough to point out my problem areas - even if it is painful!

Cora from Hidden Riches said...

Isn't it amazing how these conveniences of life seem to become necessities after a while, and we wonder how we ever got along without them? I'm trying to think back to when it was that I had no dryer?????? Hmmmmmm. ....
But, like you, I think there are many tasks that I've done for so long my own way that I probably would think my way is the only right way. Yet, who knows that someone else's way might be better, easier, and faster????? We always have the choice of extending grace, don't we? This was just beautiful today, and I'm so glad I stopped by. Thank you so much!

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