Do you hang on to things for a long time like I do? We’ve been thinking about cleaning out some things in the basement that we don’t use anymore. Actually, Gary has been thinking about it mostly. He told me yesterday that we need to get rid of some of the Little Tikes toys the kids don’t use anymore, the outgrown roller blades, the toys the kids don’t play with. I’d rather just keep stuff, but I know we do need to clean out some things that are just taking up space and making the basement look cluttered. The kids have to dig through lots of toys and skates they don’t use to get to the toys and sporting goods they really use.
I have to admit, as I look around I see lots of things I need to get rid of because they make me feel guilty and crabby when I look at them. There’s a doll house that’s partly assembled. We bought the kit for $40 way back when the girls were very young. For a while Erin begged to work on it but now we’re all busy with other projects and no one really wants to work on it. Do I give it away or burn it? I have lots of books that I enjoyed the first time through but I don’t really have a desire to read again. Do I sell them on half.com or do I just give them to the thrift store?
I won’t go through the whole list of extra stuff we have, but I hope it helps you to think of things you have in your home that are just cluttering things up and draining energy from your life. I really feel that way about my clutter! It makes me tired just to think about moving it, looking at it and feeling guilty for not using it, and the money I spent foolishly on some stuff I don’t use enough (yes, I’m thinking of my many, many rubber stamps as I type that).
It’s time for some major housecleaning. Time to “let it go” even though things cost me something at one time and I don’t like to admit I’m never going to use them. I’ve read quite a few cleaning and clutter books and many of them suggest only keeping the things you really use and love. Boy, sticking to those categories would really help me get rid of lots of my clutter! What if I would only keep the stamps I really love and use all the time, and then sell the rest on ebay? I might make a little money and clear a little room in my craft area. What if I would only keep the books I love and want to reread every once in a while? My bookshelves might be a little less crowded and I might actually be able to find my favorites more easily.
What if we took this a step farther and applied this principle of “let it go” to some things in our minds? If you’re like me you may have some thoughts cluttering up your mind that bring guilt and crabbiness whenever you come across them. Maybe it’s a grudge you just can’t seem to get over, or a feeling of shame when you think of past mistakes. For me it’s often little things – I can’t seem to stop worrying if someone has forgiven me if I’ve offended them in some way, or I keep thinking about what I should have said or done in a certain situation. Gary is good about reminding me to “Let it go” when I tell him what I’m worrying about. If I’ve done what I can to apologize or rectify a situation, I really do need to “let it go” after that and not let it clutter up my mind anymore.
Just like getting rid of physical clutter in our homes can free us to use the things we love, getting rid of mental clutter can free us to use all of our minds to love the Lord and do the things He has called us to do.
I don’t know about you, but I’m getting excited to get rid of some physical and mental clutter very soon. How much happier life could be without dragging all of that junk around with us! It’s time to “let it go” once and for all.
The end of all things is near. Therefore be clear minded [free from all that mental clutter] and self-controlled so that you can pray. Above all, love each other deeply [we can do that when our minds are free of grudges and guilt!], because love covers over a multitude of sins. (I Peter 4:7-8)
Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world [the pattern of collecting tons of needless clutter], but be transformed by the renewing of your mind [part of that includes “letting it go”]. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will. (Romans 12:2)
Of course, my comments are in the brackets in the verses above. May God help us all to be wise as we examine our homes and minds and finally “let it go”.
© Robyn Mulder 2007, therobynsnest.org