Wednesday, March 5, 2014

my lenten cleanse

Since our move, we've been living in chaos. Bookcases with house shoes. A master bedroom that looks like a cardboard box convention. And while I haven't exactly been sitting around getting pedicures every day, at some point you must find time for what is important. And the way I live, the way I treat things and my home, is important. You see, I want my children to appreciate the things they have. I want them to be grateful and treat worldly possessions, both theirs and others, with respect. But as I learn every single day, children are parrots. They do what they see. To learn gratitude and respect, they must see gratitude and respect. And having piles of clothes that you don't know where to store is not exactly a great example.

Today is the beginning of Lent. Lent is the season set aside for Christians to prepare for the celebration of the Lord's passion, death and resurrection. During Lent, we are called in a special way to examine our lives and seek out those things that separate us from our God. And what separates me from God? Stuff. Wanting stuff, "needing" stuff, worrying about stuff, stressing over the details of stuff. My home is filled with stuff that occupies my time and mind. So this Lent, I am doing a "recently moved" version of the 40 Bags in 40 Days Challenge.* I hope to declutter, organize, and simplify my physical world, and in so doing affect my spirit as well. While making space in my home, I will make space in my soul for God's grace and glory to shine in. After all, aren't our physical surroundings all too often a reflection of our insides? Don't our homes give a tiny glimpse into our hearts?

I'm not aiming for perfection here. I do have three tiny people working against my attempts at organization. But as in any spiritual discipline, perfection is not demanded. God loves us amidst our messes. I'm just praying that by Easter my mess is a little less messy...

*If you want to learn more about this challenge, google it and you can find tons of resources.

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