I dreamt about my Dad last night. It was a very short dream with the purpose that I share it with you.
In my dream, my Dad was grumbling about a task he had to do. He was tired and the thought of the task before him was overwhelming and he just did not want to do it. He was miserable thinking about it. And, I felt sorry for him. I was trying my best to encourage him but nothing I said was helping. Feeling discouraged myself, I suddenly woke up.
Immediately I knew what I should have said to help him. I should have told my dad the trick Mom taught me when I was a teenager. ‘Just make a game of it!’
My chore at the time was washing the dinner dishes. By hand. No dishwasher. Dinner was the only meal the whole family enjoyed together. Between fixing the meal and all of us eating at the same time, the pile of dirty dishes at the end was HUGE!
I shared this chore with 2 older sisters so every third day was my turn. And, I dreaded it.
I remember very vividly the day I was standing at the kitchen sink looking at this huge pile of dirty dishes and feeling just like my Dad did in my dream; defeated.
‘Oh, that’s easy!’, Mom said when I complained. ‘Just make a game out of it.’
Right Mom, try again.
‘No, really!’ she said. “Pretend you are in a contest with 3 other dishwashers and whoever finishes first is the champion. Only to be a true champion the dishes have to be clean or you get disqualified.’
I gave it a shot and believe it or not, it worked. My mindset was completely changed and yes, I ended up the champion of dishes that night!
Forty-five years later I still use this tool whenever I feel defeated or discouraged with a large task before me.
Another trick Mom shared with me when I was a young mother and housewife and asked her how she managed to keep a clean house day after day, after day, after day.
In the ‘Oh, that’s easy!’ tone of voice, Mom says, ‘I just pretend Jesus is going to stop by for a visit.’
Yup, that would do it.
Gotta love my Mom.
Your friend in Christ,