Laundry Lesson

February 27, 2023 by  
Filed under Humor, Stories

By Kim Stokely –


Our family pets love laundry day. We had a parakeet who could say two phrases, “Hi, bird” and “Praise God!” He loved to chirp back to the various squeaks and clicks the dryer made. When it came time to fold clothes, he’d tweet happily and call out “Praise God” while I worked. His gentle reminder to be thankful for God’s provision of clothes helped make the chore easier.

Alas, the bird passed away and now we have Ollie, the sock thief. This puppy has a nose for the smell of Tide and a desire to eat all of our socks and unmentionables. Who knew that washing clothes would require making a game plan of defensive maneuvers to keep the little fuzz ball from stealing items not only out of the laundry basket, but out of the dryer itself? While I’m busy folding t-shirts, Ollie sneaks behind me like a white, puffy ninja and slides a sock from the dryer. It’s only when he’s out of my reach that he lifts his head and trots happily toward the living room. It’s that happy gait that signals he’s done it again. I spend the next two or three minutes like something out of a Tom and Jerry cartoon, chasing the fluffy delinquent in circles around our house until he drops his loot.

As harmless as chewing a sock seems to be, I know that should he actually swallow the fabric, it could cause his little tummy a world of trouble. I knew of a Dalmatian whose fetish for socks landed her in the vet’s office, undergoing emergency surgery. Ollie may not understand why I keep taking away his seemingly harmless toy, but I do.

I love Ollie to pieces but get so frustrated by his constant desire to do the wrong thing. Whether it be to chew socks or tunnel under the fence, I have to keep a constant eye on the wily puppy. If only he understood that the boundaries I put up were for his own good. To protect him from harm and help him to grow up healthy.

I suppose God looks at us the same way. All of us are tempted, at least at some point, to do the wrong thing. Like Ollie, we may not even know it’s dangerous, but God does.  Psalm 25:8-9 says “Good and upright is the Lord; therefore he instructs sinners in his ways. He guides the humble in what is right and teaches them his way” (NIV). Just as I try and be patient with my puppy, God is patient with us. He guides us and, if we are willing, trains us to walk in His ways.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to run. The house is too quiet. Ollie must be up to something.


About Kim Stokely

Kim Stokely has toured throughout the country in a one-person musical about women in the Bible. She lives in Nebraska with her husband and a variety of creatures including: two teenagers, two dogs, a parakeet and a legless lizard. Her stories have been printed in Chicken Soup for the Soul, Vista, and Writers’ Journal and she invites you to visit her website @ to read her award winning short story, Bingo.
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