There was a day when people invested time and energy in cleaning their home from top to bottom each and every spring. I know because we lived next door to a dear woman for 12 years who did this faithfully each year. Her name was Mrs. Schrum. I was so impressed with the amount of effort she put into cleaning the surface of all things horizontally and vertically in her home. It was nothing short of inspiring! And did her house smell fresh and clean.
She even washed all the walls. I had never heard of such a thing. But then, I was raised quite spoiled. I didn’t have to do any cleaning growing up, which I wouldn’t recommend for anyone. It has made my responsibilities much more of a challenge as a wife and mother. <sigh>
Why am I bringing up all this talk of cleaning?
Because I think our marriages could learn a thing or two from Mrs. Schrum. We would do well to pay close attention to all the nooks and crannies of our relationship.
We want to provide you a quick check list of spring cleaning tips for your marriage. Cut it out and refer to it often, not just when the birds are chirping and the flowers blooming!
Photo Credit: World Homes Online
- 1. Clean the windows – make sure you are being transparent with your spouse about, well – everything! There should be no secrets. Open the windows and let the fresh air in. Do you welcome outside inspiration from friends, teachings or books?
- 2. Move the furniture and clean underneath – is there anything in your marriage you’ve lost and forgotten? Ways you used to romance each other. Kindnesses you used to show before life got so busy? Plan to elevate these things back into your everyday life. You will be reminded how much you enjoyed them before they got shoved unknowingly under the couch.
- 3. Sanitize the bathrooms – there is no more intimate or private room in the home than the bathroom. And it is the one room that should be cleaned the deepest and the most often. So too, with our sexual intimacy. ( yes, I’m really comparing our sex life to the bathroom. lol) Pay close attention to your ways and keep the marriage bed pure. Make love often and watch your relationship shine!
- 4. Polish the furniture – Dust reveals places no one has touched recently. If dust is accumulating on the furniture, it is one of the first things guests notice in a home . May your marriage be dust-free. Celebrate often all God has given you in your marriage. May there be no areas in your relationship where the dust of neglect has had a chance to settle.
- 5. Mop the floors – this is my least favorite household chore. It requires one to bend and stoop, push and pull, wring and flex. It’s hard work! I liken this to being willing to do the things your spouse doesn’t enjoy as a way to serve them. Tom has mopped many a floor to bless me because he knows I don’t like it. Are you willing to stoop down and do something to bless your spouse in this way?
- 6. Clean and organize the closets and drawers – many useful things are stored in places where you can’t see them. We shove them back in place when we’re in a hurry. It produces clutter and chaos instead of order and beauty. When was the last time you sat with your spouse to talk about your schedules and your priorities? Sometimes having another help you organize your time gives a new perspective you wouldn’t have thought about on your own. Try setting aside some time–take out all the things in your “closet” that are making your life feel cluttered, and ask your spouse how they would reorganize the mess.
- 7. Air out pillows in the sunshine – our pillows are used everyday. They need fresh air from time to time to put the life back in them. The saying goes, “a clear conscience makes a soft pillow.” Be sure to keep your conscience clear. How can you tell? If there is anything that causes your heart to skip a beat when you think of talking to your spouse about it. Don’t delay–air out what’s on your mind. You’ll sleep better and your marriage will be guarded as a result.
- 8. Sanitize phones and door knobs – these are the things we use daily to open the doors of communication. Deal with what’s in your heart before attempting to talk with your spouse about what’s in theirs.
- 9. Clean light fixtures and ceiling fans – It’s hard to imagine what our life would be like without electricity. It is a gift we often take for granted. In the same way the light of the Gospel affects everything we do, both personally and in our marriages. It’s easy to take this gift from God for granted. Regularly pray together in an effort to not forget the gift we’ve been given.
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What a fantastic analogy! Thanks so much for sharing!
Thank you, Mark. We’re so glad you liked the analogy.
I have a feeling that Mrs. Schrum might have been Jewish- where is from where this ritual (spring cleaning) derives. The requirement to remove EVERY speck of non-kosher for Passover items from your abode…
It’s 10 days away and I’m busy at work AND at home cleaning up…
(I already effected the “warehouse” cleaning of my marriage…)
Mrs. Schrum wasn’t Jewish, but she was the kindest lady I’ve had the privilege of knowing. She passed away a few years ago, and I miss her still. I’m currently reading through Leviticus and Numbers, so I understand completely what was required of keeping things clean and in order. Hope you finish in time!
Great analogies here, Debi. Creative as always.
Love this analogy. I’d include tackling the clutter that haunts us in the basement. Many marriages begin with spousal baggage from their pasts. It’s time to get rid of it once and for all in order to focus on the present and future.
Lisa, Since I’m a Floridian by birth, I don’t immediately think about a basement. But your analogy is perfect–so glad you shared! Baggage should never be stored, only emptied and put away for good.
Hello! I really like this blog. Tell me please – from where do you have information for ths blog?
Brilliant! I’d love to know what to clean BEFORE you get married, 6 months and counting till our big day 😀
Before your marriage the best thing to work on is the Windows–transparency and honesty are the framework for the start of a healthy marriage. This goes towards your fiance’ as well as towards God. You can also check out our tab at the top titled, Your Engaged. There you’ll find great questions to help you talk about the things that really matter. There are also lots of great resources you’ll find helpful. So, when is the big day?
Ah thank you for that advice! I will definately be having a look at that page 🙂 big day is the 7th Sept, exciting times!
Wow! I absolutely love this list…clever and helpful. Totally sharing this on my Good Clicks for the weekend.
Thank you Eve, for your encouragement and for sharing it with your readers.
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Debi – I emailed you. Absolutely love this and want to repost on https://marriedstrong.com/. It hit 70 here in New Hampshire and we are thinking SPRING CLEANING! I am pushing everyone back to your post here for the full read of course! God bless you guys! – Michael
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Thank you guys! I just read your post and I’m sure you’re ready for Spring!! We are in Florida and Summer is knocking on our door. I’m not ready.
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This is amazing! I am taking it all to heart and spring cleaning my marriage. This should be must reading for engaged couples. Thank you!
Ha! Thank you Mindy. I’ve been on your site reading about your daughter and son-in-law’s nightmare and healing over 7 years. Wow! Such a beautiful testimony of living out their marriage vows “for better or worse, in sickness and in health.” Thanks for commenting. We can always use annual spring cleaning of our marriages. Blessings!
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Thank you so much Debi! Their’s is definitely a beautiful healing story. Thanks for visiting my site and thanks for your love of marriage ❤️
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