Ever been in the last 5 minutes of watching a ballgame and your wife peeks in and says something like, “Dear, Could you put in a load of laundry?”
You probably answered something like, “Sure” or “Ok” and then went about watching the rest of the game.
You may have immediately stopped and got the laundry going if there happened to be a commercial right then. You may have started the laundry right after the game. You might have even tripped over some underwear on the floor an hour later and realized that you didn’t start the laundry and then did it. Or you might have just forgotten about it or even blown it off. So, how long should our wives wait for us to get a chore done that we said that we would do?
What kind of predicament are you putting your wife in at home? Have you promised to wash the dishes, put away groceries, spend more time with the family, mow the grass, or even leave the seat down and not followed through? I am sure all of us have failed to keep the promises we have made to our wives from time to time. Some husbands, though, have made promise dropping a habitual offense. We do not like it when our wife reminds us of a task that we have made our responsibility. We call it nagging. We don’t like it if our wife goes ahead and accomplishes the chore. We might say she was being disrespectful and showing us up.
What should be our wife’s timeframe for getting to a request? 10 seconds. 10 minutes. 10 days. 10 months. Now I think most wives would understand the 10 minutes to watch the end of the game, but how long should she wait? Let me state for the record that I am not talking about that house remodeling project that may take 3-6 months working around your work schedule to accomplish. Usually the kind of tasks I am talking about take 5 minutes to accomplish. It could even be that last part of finishing a project that we have just let fall through the cracks. Mostly, husbands seem to fail at simple chores. You know load with whatever, put cleaner in, and push the on button kind of stuff.
Is it that these things are not high enough on our “fix-it” meter for us to treat them with importance? It could be that if we really look in the mirror that we would find that we can be lazy. Yep, I said it. We justify it I am sure with the great importance of watching a ballgame or a show. We probably can’t break ourselves away from checking email or playing a video game. And…..we probably fall victim to the chores being a priority for our wives so we know that if we don’t accomplish them they will eventually get done anyway (by them).
So, here is the challenge to you. You need to make a commitment today to start becoming a Promise Keeper. If you are going to be a Godly, servant husband, then being a promise keeper should be a priority for you. This post has focused on being a promise keeper to your wife, but you shouldn’t stop there. It is equally important that you are responsible with your commitments to your children, church, school, or work. It is just like when a leader at work or church starts a new program with a bunch of grand plans. If their commitment to their grand plans falls off as the program is put into action you begin to lose faith in their leadership.
So, how can we do a better job of being promise keepers? Make your time a priority. If you say you will do something make the time you need to do it a priority. If you do not have the time, do not commit to it.
Get intentional about your good intentions. When your wife asked you to do a chore you probably answered affirmatively with all intentions to accomplish the chore. Get intentional about getting this task done. If you can’t do it right now, let her know when you are going to get it done. Write it down if you have to. Put it on the calendar or alarm on your phone or watch so you don’t forget. Lastly, you usually have to get up off the couch or out of the bed to get something done so you need to make a commitment of not being a sluggard.
But what if I worked hard today already and I am too tired? That can be an excuse. Chances are your wife has had a similar day to yours. If you truly can’t do the task right now, you need to go to her and let her know you can’t get it done tonight and then let her know when you can do it. You could even trade off and commit to a few more things on a night when you are in better shape. Just remember before you bow out that your wife may be feeling overwhelmed before she ever asked you. Sometimes it might be better to suck it up and get something done so both of you can make it through.
Are you ready to step up and be a Promise Keeper to your wife and family? Take your next opportunity that they give you to set in motion a positive habit that will serve you well in your home, work, and church.