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Monday, November 28, 2011

Advent Day 3: De-Clutter

I had decided that yesterday would be the day when I would get most of the house decorating done for Christmas.  I have a lot of decorations and it require a bit of effort to bring the numerous boxes up from our basement storage, unpack them, and figure out where I want to put things.  But the very first thing I have to do is take down and put away the stuff that adorns our house for the rest in the year.  In the process of finding places to put things, I found myself beginning to clear out spaces that have needed attention for a long time.  Fortunately for me, Doug was also in the mood to delouse the house so he started in on the extra bedroom, which becomes a dumping ground when we don't have time to deal with stuff in the moment.  We moved from the bedroom, to the closet, to the boxes stored on the floor and and in the closet, to the drawers, etc., etc., etc.  You get the picture.  It was amazing to see what lurked in that bedroom.  Some of the items found were treasures and it was really great to locate some items that we had wondered about.  Other things were just trash and needed to be pitched.  We parted with our video tapes, realizing that we don't even own a VCR anymore and there were only two video tapes worth keeping and trying to convert over to digital.  I saved those.  Some things are worth saving, like your wedding video.  But most of the stuff that took up space in that room, well, did just that, took up space. And while some of it was perfectly decent stuff that we donated to the thrift store, I was astonished at how much was just simply trash.  
A small portion of the stuff we took to the thrift store.
While I have to admit a bit of angst that perhaps we have thrown or given away something that eventually I will want (that which is the great temptation to hold onto clutter, right?), given that I hadn't seen most of what we pitched or gave away for years, I seriously doubt that Tuesday next week I will reach for it.  It made our lives so much easier when we hauled in the Christmas boxes and began to sort through those treasures.
It's often hard to let go of things in our lives, even when all they are doing is taking up valuable space that could be filled with something else or perhaps even left empty in order to allow for something new to come into our lives.  During the Advent season maybe we hope to meet God in some special new way, but I have to ask...have you created some space in your life in order to make room for God to show up in a special manner?  We need to de-clutter our minds and our hearts in order to create some breathing room for ourselves.  What do you need to purge from your live in order to create new space for God to breath something fresh into your heart?  Is it letting go of a past hurt?  Is it simply allowing yourself the chance to sit and breath for a few minutes without thinking about the next 10 things on your list?  Is it saying no to something important and worthwhile so that you can be freed from the frenzy and pace that surround you?  Think of one thing today that you could let go of, be freed of, in order to open up some space in your life for God to fill you with something new.