Last week, I returned home after being gone for around two months. One of the first things that came to my attention was all the clutter that had exploded in the living room of our tiny apartment. We had kept throwing things on any available surface until there was no room left to put anything else and there was no hope of finding anything we needed. Finally, it became unbearable and I had to stop everything that was planned and spend time clearing the clutter and getting rid of things that were no longer needed.
So many times, it seems that many of us face this in our spiritual lives as well. We struggle to hold on to things that clutter up our lives and make it difficult to move forward into the things that God has for us. It can be painful to surrender some of that clutter that we think we can’t live without. Sometimes we think we don’t have the time to stop and remove the clutter. Most often we would be able to move much more efficiently if we would only stop and remove the clutter instead of fighting to continue walking forward with it weighing us down.
Two of the biggest areas of spiritual clutter that have been weighing me down are pride and judgments made about others.
Pride will cause us to make some very bad decisions in our lives. One area where pride shows up in my life is my constant need to justify my actions to others. I also have found myself saying yes and being committed to too many things because of pride. Then I have to humble myself and admit that I’m unable to keep all my obligations. Another way pride manifests itself in my life, is when I decide that I am my own provider and choose not to wait on God to take care of me. This has caused several financial issues.
11The eyes of the arrogant man will be humbled and the pride of men brought low; the LORD alone will be exalted in that day.
Pride is nearly impossible to let go of and I believe can only be accomplished by daily humbling ourselves before God. God will allow us to go through some of the most heart wrenching circumstances to work on our pride, until we learn to give it up on our own.
Judging others is another big one. Many times I’ve been reminded of words I have spoken carelessly about others when I feel I’m being judged by someone else. We can find ourselves being haunted by our careless words many times until we learn our lesson.
37 “Judge not, and you will not be judged; condemn not, and you will not be condemned; forgive, and you will be forgiven;
Just like in our physical life, if we learn to deal with the clutter as we go, we will have a much easier journey and fewer times where we are derailed and have to stop everything just to work on the clutter.
What types of physical clutter do you hold on to? Do you see a parallel between your physical and spiritual clutter? Please feel free to share so I know I’m not the only one and so we can encourage each other.