The Unbroken Woman blog is hosting The Respect Dare. Starting July 10, participants will be using Nina Roesner’s The Respect Dare: 40 Days to a Deeper Connection with God and Your Husband as a guide, posting about their journey. And I will be doing it with you!
I have worked outside the home for our entire marriage. Nina Roesner says, “Women who work or have worked outside the home face different challenges in their marriages. The expectation of reward, born out of the receipt of a paycheck and workplace recognition, can transfer to the home life, creating similar expectations that go unfulfilled.”
I have to say….I disagree. I have often expected recognition for my work around the house, but it has never been about reward. It all goes back to me not wanting to be invisible and wanting to be valued.
It is also important to me to be accurately understood, which is why I’m taking issue with this passage. She is right that I expect recognition. She is right that I need to work for God and not for any human recognition. But why do I want to clarify the “why” of my desire for recognition? It’s because I am still so caught up in defining my worth in human terms rather than in my relationship with God and I don’t want anyone assuming something about me that I don’t think is accurate.
I must be making some progress in my relationship with God, because I am able to look at what I just wrote, set it aside, and move back to this: “She is right that I need to work for God and not for any human recognition.”
One of the wonderful things about the college where I work is its sense of mission and purpose. In a new employee orientation a couple years ago, I was asked to describe my job—and then it was explained to me how my one job contributed to the mission and purpose of the college.
I’m thinking about that now, as I consider this Dare. I remember thinking how meaningful it was to have my one job on campus connected to our collective service. Me, part of the bigger picture. So I know, now…I can do this. I can find meaning and purpose in small details.
After I got home from work today, I carried several baskets of clean laundry to our room. My normal routine has been to sort the clothes into piles according to who it belongs to. I have always left it to my husband to do his own folding, figuring that since I did all the laundry, it was the least he could do. But today, I folded his clothing and sorted it into piles on the bed. (It didn’t even occur to me to put it away. Oops. Maybe next time.) I found myself thinking about God while folding my husband’s t-shirts. As I folded his underwear and undershirts, I found myself smiling and thinking about how much I love my husband.
And in the middle of folding the socks, I thanked God for my husband.
Read these other bloggers to learn about their experiences with the Respect Dare:
The Respect Dare Blog (author Nina Roesner)