I am in the midst of cleaning out my closet. I should take a picture.
My closet has been neglected for most of the time we have lived in this house. 7 years. It has become the catch-all of the house and has piled high enough it would be respected on the Hoarder’s show.
The rest of the house is lived-in. Most days it is not too bad, although there are always evidences of the children. Socks on the floor. X-box remotes on the couch. The endless supply of kids plastic character cups that can be found in the strangest places.
Lived-in, but not out-of-control, and usually just a few minutes away from being respectable. I’ve become a better keeper of the house as I have aged.
Except that dang closet. I’ve been working on it for the last hour or so and have made a scratch. Not a dent but a scratch.
I have this inkling that when I get it clean…I mean really organized and clean…it will mark something for me. It will mark the first step to the other projects around the house that I would like to get to.
The problem is I keep finding treasures as I clean. Little notes from the boys. Pictures that I’d forgotten. Books I want to read.
Things tucked away because they were important, but have been lost in a bunch of “stuff”. Mind you, this closet is a walk-in that comfortably houses two 6′ bookshelves along with all the built in shelving. I can cram a lot of stuff in that closet.
I think this is one of the things that gets me when I watch a show like Hoarders…we want to keep things because they mean something, and then all of a sudden we find that the important things are mixed in with the trash and we’ve lost track of which is which so that everything means less. The people on Hoarder’s started holding on to stuff almost invariably because there was a tragedy.
Tragedies scare us and they rattle us. And we want to hold on to something to remind us that we’re still here and we’re still part of something and we still belong….and there are still important things.
If all we are doing, though, is holding on to things to find some source of comfort, eventually we look and we are holding on to trash.
Life is like that, yes?
We hold on to habits, to ways of doing things, to thoughts, to activities…to people even…because we want to know that we are part of something. That we belong and there are important things that mean something in our lives.
Sometimes, though, all that stuff becomes cluttered with things that don’t mean anything, and we find ourselves overwhelmed.
Sometimes we need to clean things out. We need to clean out our thoughts, our habits and our activities…even the people we are investing in…to find what is really important.
When we’ve cleaned the stuff out, it is easier to breathe and to be efficient and to see that what is important is not the stuff. What is important is that we are created and made and called and loved by a Living God. We are His and we are not alone or forgotten. The stuff has not made us valuable…we are valuable just in being us. Unique, amazing creatures.
Back to the closet I go…redeeming the things that are truly important and finding them places where they can be remembered and enjoyed, free from the distractions of the trash. Back as well to redeem the things that are important in life, and to release the things that are not….