The Spiritual Benefits Of Chores

cleaning supplies original

Photo by Condesign (2014) via Pixabay, CC0 Public Domain

It’s officially summer. Time for swimsuits, popsicles, fireflies, and…chores. I’m always relieved when school gets out. I can step back, breathe a little, and take more time to teach my kids the things I want to–and the things I feel I should.

Chores fall into this latter category. They aren’t always fun to enforce. A little nagging and complaining just goes with the territory. But they’re worth it, right? After all, chores teach self-discipline, time-management, life skills, and teamwork. All good things, but I’ve found that looking beyond the obvious benefits of chores is motivating me to persevere in my efforts to teach my children well.

Already this summer, I’ve discovered four spiritual benefits of maintaining a chore routine:

  1. It emphasizes the Sabbath

One Monday morning, my seven-year-old daughter suddenly said, “Mommy!  We didn’t do our chores yesterday!” Her comment started a conversation about the importance of resting and taking a break from our regular routine on Sundays. We also talked about how some chores, like cooking and dishes, still need to be done–we just try our best to only do work that is truly a necessity. The routine of daily chores during the week helps us to better make Sunday special and holy–a day set apart for God and family.

      2. It supports a prayer routine

Chores provide some routine to our summer days. In building a schedule for cleaning toilets, polishing windows, and mopping floors, we also include time for regular prayer–at least a Morning Offering and mealtime prayers together. The discipline of a chore routine carries over into the discipline of a prayer routine–and helps us to remember that prayer is an essential part of our day.

      3. It connects body and soul

We were created for work. Work is good. God worked to create the planets, animals, and us. Adam and Eve worked in the Garden of Eden even before the fall. Work gives us purpose. It connects the ideas of our minds and the longings of our souls with the motions of our bodies.  It reminds us of our humanity while revealing the divinity of our creativity. My children sometimes complain about their chores, but I am often surprised by their enthusiasm in attacking them. By contributing to the beauty of our home and the welfare of our family, they feel valued. They discover for themselves that they are unique and unrepeatable images of God.

    4. It helps us better appreciate God’s gift of leisure

There are days when everyone is weary, when everyone is grumpy, when everyone truly needs a break. A spontaneous trip to the beach or pool, a morning spent hiking a nature trail, or an entire weekend get-away becomes truly special amidst the routine of daily life. We’re more grateful for the vacation, and ready to return to the security of work and routine once we are refreshed.

Chores help us to find God, appreciate the gifts He gives us, and be more human. Persevere, and work on!

Copyright 2016 Charisse Tierney
Photo by Condesign via Pixabay, CCO Public Domain



About Author

Charisse Tierney lives in Wichita, Kansas, with her husband Rob and seven children. Charisse is a stay-at-home mom, musician, NFP teacher, and a Catechesis of the Good Shepherd catechist in training. She is also a contributing author to The Catholic Mom's Prayer Companion and Family Foundations magazine. Charisse blogs at Paving the Path to Purity and can be found on Facebook.


  1. Abby Brundage on

    Can I add to the list? Doing (or not doing) chores reminds us that our actions have consequences. On the plus side, you can contribute to change! What you do makes a difference that other people can see and benefit from. On the down side – put off cleaning for too long and the dirt can build up and make life difficult. Never washing the windows makes it increasingly difficult to see the beauty outside.

    Thanks for a great post, Charisse!

    • Thanks so much for adding a great point to the list Abby! It seems I go over the idea of natural consequences with my children every time they can’t find their shoes because they didn’t put them away when they took them off! It definitely takes repetition for children to start to establish good habits, but I am seeing the fruits of my labor start to take form in my older children. And the frustration of a messy, non-functional household is a good lesson for everyone at times!

Leave A Reply

Notify me of followup comments via e-mail. You can also subscribe without commenting.