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Cleaning Out the Junk!

BY LEANN DILBECK –

So, our home has been under “Operation Dilbeck Clean-Out” since the beginning of the year, cleaning out closets, drawers, cabinets, attic, etc. When my husband and I first built this house and moved in, it was literally 3-times the size of our first starter home and we never dreamed that we could fill every nook and cranny… but then again, we didn’t have children then either. Since that time, our family has doubled, not to mention the farm animals we’ve acquired, and our “stuff” has multiplied ten-fold over… and that’s not a complaint because we realize that we are certainly blessed.

He and I both have OCD and a need to have everything in proper order but I, unlike him, have a hard time of letting things go. Whether it’s for sentimental reasons or the very fact that something is still in good condition… I have a tendency to not want to let go because I feel “wasteful” in doing so.

Growing up, I didn’t necessarily have everything I ‘wanted’ but I certainly had everything I ‘needed.’ My parents were able to instill in me a grateful heart and an “appreciation” for the things I had… whether second-hand or brand-new, my parents worked very hard and I knew what they gave came from a lot of hard-work, thought, and love. Even years later, I could still remember the joy that some particular thing brought me when I received it.

Along that time, I heard a message from one of my favorite Christian authors, Lysa TerKeurst who said she, too, used to struggle with that same feeling of wastefulness but then realized that it wasn’t being wasteful but rather sharing the “joy” with someone else… the same “joy” she first experienced when she first wore the sweater or sat the vase on the mantle.

That was when I became convicted about all of our “stuff” and decided we should “share the joy” and it was through cleaning out our “junk” that I realized how symbolic it was of life.  As we trudge along, we seem to acquire a lot of junk that, if we allow ourselves to be consumed with it, we begin to feel cramped, and not able to share joy or grow.

People hang on to things for lots of good reasons… sentimental reasons, etc… but so many times, we do out of pure selfishness, or the fear of doing without, or maybe it’s clinging to the past.

Just like our homes become filled with too much “junk” that we need to eventually purge, sometimes life becomes filled with so much “junk” that we need to purge so that we can become as hungry as a newborn child is for its mothers milk.  1 Peter 2:1-3:

“Therefore, rid yourselves of all malice and all deceit, hypocrisy, envy, and slander of every kind. Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation, now that you have tasted that the Lord is good.”

None of us purposefully want this “junk” but life has a way of bringing such ugliness out in people because of our sinful nature and the challenge of remaining cloaked in His armor every second of every day. Just like we make a conscious choice to rid our homes of “junk,” we have to rid our lives of the “junk” that the Enemy would prefer we drag around with us.

We must also step back and assess that which we surround ourselves with because “junk-in” usually equals “junk-out”. Maybe it’s the shows we watch, the music we listen to, the sites we visit, what we drink or eat… or maybe it’s just the influence some people are in our life?

Or, maybe you’re holding on to a past failure, or a past hurt? Maybe you’re clinging to a past memory or hoarding resentment? There’s no time like the present to get rid of the “junk” in your life so that you have empty shelves and drawers for the closet full of blessings that He has waiting just for you! Make room for Him and His goodness in your life!

All for His glory –

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