We know it is God's will for people in the home to be courteous, for the Holy Spirit, speaking through the Word, said, "...be courteous." 1 Peter 3:8.
According to the 1828 dictionary, courtesy means to be friendly minded, polite, well-mannered, civil, obliging, and elegant. Those of you who like the stories written by Jane Austen will recall Emma saying, "When pressed, I say he is very elegant." She may have been referring to the manners of a gentleman.
Dress Up at Home
One simple way to show courtesy in the home is to dress respectably. Even when there are no others around to see you, proper dress has a tremendous impact on the mind, and if you are dressed up rather than down, you will approach your life's work at home as a profession, a ministry and an art. This will increase your sense of self-worth and ambition.
To dress for others in the home shows that you respect them and regard them highly enough to present yourself in a good light. We all have days of rest and relaxation, but we can still dress beautifully at home. It brings out the best in us and it inspires those we have in our care. Remember that children will be whatever you are, yourself, and if you want to teach them to care about how they look, be sure to look well, yourself.
I know in this prevailing culture it is hard to find anyone dressed up for anything anymore, much less, the home. If you are depressed by the "dressing down" in the public places you go for your shopping and errands, or even travel, you probably know there is not much you can do to change it. A recent article here talks about a culture that refuses to dress up.
You can, however, change things in yourself and in your home. If you dress nice to go out in public, it will spread an influence, and others will follow. You can dress up at home, and be less depressed, and influence your family. I am not speaking of formal wear or a prom dress, but of clothing that is more formal than sportswear. It shows courtesy when you dress for your home. Dress up for your lovely home and to show courtesy to the people you love!
Pick Up After Yourself.
It is courteous to look after your own things and not leave them about for other people to pick up. It is courteous to finish your work and not leave it for other people to finish. Everyone in the home should take care of themselves as soon as they are able to learn how, and should finish their own work if they are able. In the home, it is courteous not to burden other family members with our own possessions and messes.
One way to break the habit of leaving things laying around is to gather everything when you leave a place. When you get up from a chair, look around and pick up anything you have been using. Let the evidence of your presence be that the area looks better than before you came.
If you want to make a habit of picking things up, try it for a day and you will see it is less labor intensive than waiting for a clean-up day, and you will show courtesy to others by being a good example.
Build One Another Up
Showing courtesy at home requires that we build one another up and not spread gloom and doom in the home. Rather than leave others with a feeling of hopelessness, try to give them help and hope and encouragement. Learn to make life better, and not sink down into defeat.
Courtesy in the home will make life worth living, and the home the most desirable place to be. It is discourteous to complain, but it is courtesy to fix things.
Today I have a video on this subject:
Please keep writing your suggestions and ideas for subjects to cover. I am eventually going to do podcasts so you can have things to listen to while washing dishes and making beds ;-)
I have no idea why the video transposed the scene from left to right. It should be like the photo, below. Maybe I did not notice a setting.
I usually get some questions about the cardigans I have worn in these videos. This one is Faded Glory brand cotton cardigan, price $8.00 from Walmart, available in many colors.