Where do I want to start?
Well, that’s the dilemma… I don’t really want to start. I want the desired outcome without going through the process. (Oh wow. Major life application already!)
My thinking was to pick a somewhat manageable space to start decluttering, so I chose the cabinet under the kitchen sink. It’s a small, awkward space, but how hard could it be? Not much can even fit under there… or so I thought.
I had neglected this space for probably a decade, other than to shove in the next thing. It’s not a glamorous area… hidden, dark… and for the most part, no-one sees it except me. Only I really know how much it’s in disarray. And, truthfully, you can run a kitchen without it being pristinely organized under the sink!
As I pulled EVERYTHING out, the thought struck me: This not so clean spot stores the supplies to clean the rest of the kitchen. What an interesting concept. In many ways, it’s the hub of the kitchen, but I treat it as if it doesn’t matter. Because of my lack of attention, I pulled out empty boxes, corroded silver polish, old, yucky sponges, and unnecessary duplicate supplies. I also had quite a few mason jar lids strewn about. Why would I randomly hold on to these? For my next canning project? Hah! NO.
I took inventory. What do I really need to run and clean the kitchen… the most used room of our house? And what is accumulated junk cluttering up this limited, odd-shaped space? As I asked myself these questions, I made a series of decisions. (Remember, a definition of clutter is delayed decisions.) In about an hour, the space was decluttered, cleaned and organized. The unused items and old junk (including those mason jar lids!) were thrown out.
So… here’s the application and your mission… should you choose to accept it:
Choose a cupboard, small closet, drawer— something kind of hidden that only you tend to deal with, to declutter. Pull or dump everything out and begin making decisions about what you really need to keep. As you do this, make it also a time of examining your life. Ask yourself the following:
What am I hanging onto in my private world, holding me back from God’s best, because I simply haven’t taken the time to unpack it before God, with God?
What is tucked away in your heart? What needs to be brought out into the light?
“Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit with me.” Psalm 51:10
I’m telling you, there IS a connection between dealing with our physical clutter and our spiritual lives. Use this as your own, personal object lesson, asking God to get the junk out of your life, anything that is holding you back from a deeper, more clarifying walk with Him.
I decluttered and organized this space and, so far, it has STAYED that way. I took inventory, stocked it and continue to maintain it. At times, other family members will “mess it up” a bit by throwing things in, but it’s up to me to hold the boundaries and do the maintenance.
Don’t take on other’s junk!… allowing them to contaminate your heart. Stay clean before God by confession, with thanksgiving.
Just for fun… here are my before and after pics.
I was feeling pretty proud of myself until I came across another blogger who just wrote about how she purged and organized her WHOLE kitchen, 18 cabinets and 10 drawers, in 2 hours!
BUT… that’s okay.
I’ve started. I’ve had success. And now I have time for that next canning project! (Too bad I threw out those lids!) Hah!!
Let me know if you take on the challenge. I’d love to hear from you and even see a picture or two.