Saturday, October 22, 2011

Ironing with God

The first thing I did this morning was iron RB's shirts.  I'll be in Pennsylvania with my parents and then enjoy a mini vacation with my sister.  I want to do everything possible to ensure the household runs smoothly while I am away.  Thus the shirt ironing. (RB's version: "Want to make sure everything's ironed out before my departure!")

I've had many people tell me if you take shirts out of the dryer right away you don't have to iron them. I've even been given the brand of shirts that never need ironing.  However I have yet to see a shirt to come out of the dryer with a crisp crease down the sleeve or with starched collars.  And my man sure does love his stiffly starched shirts.

For some reason, looking at the row of shirts I ironed reminded me of having a stiff upper lip.  Fortitude in the face of adversity.  Those of you who love the English humorist,  P. G. Wodehouse, will recall reading "Keep a Stiff Upper Lip, Jeeves."
"I accepted the situation...though stunned I kept..."
"A stiff upper lip?"
The Apostle Paul put it this way, "Be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power" (Ephesians 6:10).  There are days when my patience is tried.  When the knot I tied at the end of the rope is unraveling.  In the middle of rope issues, I can be assured the Lord I serve will hand me another rope.

I didn't realize how many times God promises strength in His Word.  Here are a few:

The Lord is good, a strong hold in the day of trouble; and He knoweth them that trust in Him. (Nahum 1:7)

Fear thou not; for I am with you: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen you; yes, I will uphold you with the right hand of my righteousness. (Isaiah 41:10)

That He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with might by His Spirit in the inner man. (Ephesians 3:16-21)

In the day when I cried you answered me, and strengthened me with strength in my soul. (Psalm 138:3)

I will go in the strength of the Lord God. (Psalm 46:1-3)

God is our refuge and strength. (Psalm 71:16)

He shall strengthen thine heart. (Psalm 27:14)

My heart spilled over while reading these Scriptures.  Telling myself to have a stiff upper lip took on new meaning. Finding fortitude in adversity isn't a deep hole without light.  I don't have to face my trials alone, because God has promised strength -- not only promised it, but He is our strength.  

The secret is in the verse from Nahum: ....knows them that trust in him.  Starched Stiff.  Just like RB's shirts.  When I trust, God adds the starch.
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Katharine said...

Yes! I so needed this today, thank you for sharing! I will never look at my bottle of spray starch the same. I have been handed another rope this morning!
Have a wonderful weekend.

Kathryn Ross said...

Amen - to the fact that nothing comes out of my dryer that I still don't see a need for the iron - and to P.G. Wodehouse of Jeeves and Wooster fame and a favorite writer keeping that stiff upper lip like the English who learned to do so through centuries of tumultuous history giving the BBC film food for eternity.

But in all - Amen to the strength of the Lord, who irons out our wrinkles and supports us in the safety of His closet-wings!


Denise said...

Wonderful post!It brings back memories of my Grandma Ketzel.We spent a lot of time with her and she loved to iron.She was a happy lady anyways but when she ironed you could see the joy of the Lord gleaming around her.I have her same joy of the Lord gleaming around me (I hope)BUT NEVER from ironing :)HeHe I feel I've missed out on something wonderful.

Brenda @ It's A Beautiful Life said...

I enjoyed my first time visit here. What a lovely site -- I feel the sheltering tree!

Your man is well blessed to have a wife who knows that crisp creases and starched collars matter to him!

The Woodman's Wife said...

I like this analogy very much.
We all need starching by God!
If it wasn't for His continual strengthening in my life, I would be be a crumpled mess, that's for sure!
Thanks for this encouraging word.

Mrs. Smith said...

Hi Pamela! THANK YOU for this post! The Lord spoke through you to me today!

Anonymous said...

Wonderful, uplifting post!

(PS. Those are mighty fine looking shirts RB has there. I like a crisp crease down the sleeve also. It just looks neater.)

That corgi :) said...

I like that you iron your husband's shirt! I can't tell you the last time I ironed anything, plus we don't even have an iron these days, but you are right, you can't get that freshed pressed look just from the dryer alone.

I am so glad God is my strength and my shield.

One of my favorite verses is Psalm 9:9-10. The Lord is a refuge for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble. Those who know your name will trust in you, for you, Lord, have never forsaken those who seek you.

And so glad that his strength is everlasting and he never grows weary!


Grandma Yellow Hair said...

What a blessing to come by here and read such a beautiful post.
I so enjoyed my visit by here tonight and God Bless You

Joan said...


I read that verse in Nahum on Friday. It was on a calendar I have on my desk at work. Since I haven't read Nahum as often as other books of the Bible, it really stood out to me. I find that often, when God is speaking to me, He will confirm it by my reading the same verse two or three different places within a short time.

Speak Lord, I am listening!


Joan Davis said...

God is my strength and I am trusting Him! Great analogy - thanks! By the way, the shirts look great! I'm inspired...Ironing is not my favorite thing to do, but you are right, straight out of the dryer just doesn't produce the same results. I like to use that time to talk to God as I iron...this week, as I work through a pile of my husband's shirts, I'm going to be sure to be thanking God for His strength!

Blessings, Joan

The Dickinsons said...

Great Post, Pam. After packing for my family of 7 to move to Buenos Aires, Argentina (with just a small amount of allotted luggage) and traveling through the night with a 3 year old and baby...I can testify that God truly can be one's strength!! =) We had tried to find an apt. on line for us to live in, but nothing was working out. ONE HOUR before we left for the airport we got a message that someone had found an apt. for us. So, when we landed, we got to go to a nice furnished apt. rather than stay in a hotel. Isn't God awesome? We are rejoicing in His loving care! =)

Love ya,

SocialStudiesSoubrette said...

Enjoy your trip to see your folks! Thanks for the beautiful reminder <3

Rina said...

Yes, in every trial we go through, God's purpose is to STRENGTHEN us - our faith, our trust - and not to weaken us. I've found this out first-hand. He "irons" us, too, to remove our creases and wrinkles.

Looking at the shirts you ironed, you're a great iron woman :). (I know you've a heart of flesh, Pamela).

By the way, I hope you've received the bag giveaway?

Have a blessed vacation,

Rina said...

I'm so sorry to have used the words iron woman in my first comment. I just remember now that there's a movie with the title "iron man" and I thought it's not good to use it. What I meant was - you do your tasks as a noble wife so well and your beloved husband is so blessed to have you :).

I pray you will have a great time visiting your parents and sister,

Deanna said...

i think i need some starch!

Janis@Open My Ears Lord said...

Loved the Scriptures on the strength the Lord gives us. I will meditate on these this week. You have a wonderful trip.


Charlotte said...

Good thoughts here, Pamela. You've taken starch to a whole new level. I remember years ago when I was growing up we used starch for a lot of our clothes. Then after they dried they had to be "sprinkled" with water and rolled up for awhile to distribute the moisture evenly. Then came the ironing. I'm sure today's generation has never heard of such a thing. The only starch I've used for the past few decades has been spray on starch. When my husband was preaching each Sunday for the last several years he took them to a laundry and they came back beautifully starched and ironed. I really appreciated him doing that.
Thanks for bringing back the memories and applying them in a spiritual way.

Ruth said...

I remember the sprinkling and rolling up that Charlotte wrote about. :)
Thanks, Pamela, for the scriptures on God's strength. What a privilege to be infused with divine strength and to know that He upholds us when we trust Him. May we be transformed from wrinkled wads to crisp wearable garments as He irons us.
Blessings on your week.

Sharon said...

This was great!

You will love the fact that my husband is the one who likes to do all the ironing in our house! He is a big starch fan, too!

I like the idea of being Starched Stiff in the Lord - better than scared stiff without Him!

His strength, made perfect in my weakness. Oh, He knows me, and He cares for me. Glorious truth. Tremendous comfort. Everlasting hope.


Carolyn Counterman said...

I have yet to see a shirt that looks crisp when it comes out of the dryer. Totally agree.

It would be nice if God would spray some aerosol strength all over my life. I wish!

SharonB said...

I love this! Those verses are some of my favorites. Thanks for the reminder that HE IS our strength.


Laura said...

Well. Ironing shirts will never be the same. This is close to my heart as I have some precious memories of learning the "proper" way to iron a shirt. Makes me smile just thinking. Thank you, Pam. You always have such a way of making a girl feel welcome.

A Joyful Noise said...

I Keep a "stiff" upper lip as I admit that I no longer iron anything. Loved your post though. And because hubby likes his stiff collar you are a good and loving wife to iron his shirts.
Thank you for the scriptures that fit in so well with your message.

Jessica @FoundtheMarbles said...

I love when you say that "Finding fortitude in adversity isn't a deep hole without light." What a terrific statement.

Ria said...

Hi there,

Nice blog you have here.

Anita Johnson said...

You have such a beautiful way to see things in your life. I will think of you the next time i iron. (-:

Anita Johnson said...

You have such a beautiful way to see things in your life. I will think of you the next time i iron. (-:

LeAnn said...

I loved the thoughts and scriptures. I like to iron shirts for my husband too. He really likes a little starch.
Yes, God is our strength and I do trust in him. My favorite scripture is Proverbs 3: 5-6.
Blessings to you and hope you are having a great trip.

Just Be Real said...

Ahhh, thank you for sharing. Blessings.

Shoregirl said...

Glad God gives us strength for the day --love the verses you posted!

Shoregirl said...

Glad God gives us strength for the day --love the verses you posted!