I recently made the dreaded error of telling my husband about my overly ambitious plan for this summer: I plan on cleaning out a cabinet or shelf each day. Throughout the entire house. Until they are all clean and organized.
Now, if that doesn’t sound like a big deal to you, I need to let you in on a little secret.
I. Stink. At. Housekeeping.
And we’ve been in this house for 20 years.
And now that I said I’m doing it, I have to follow-through.
And many of these cabinets and shelves haven’t seen the light of day since we moved in. So. Yeah. I’m gonna be busy. Don’t look for me at the pool very often this summer. ‘Cuz I’ll be buried in the back of the closet somewhere. Sheesh…
My best friend, after I told her my ridiculously ambitious goal, looked at me and said, “What on earth possessed you to take THAT on?” (Best friends know your limitations. I clearly should’ve consulted her before I made that inane declaration.)
And I told her the truth. THIS is my motivation:
Nothing good thrives in the dark, really. Sure, there are those crazy-looking electrified fish that live, like, a gazillion feet under water. And, okay, the stars look pretty cool way out in the country on a clear, dark night. Oh, and fireflies.
But what really thrives in the dark are clutter and mess. It’s high time for me to shed some serious light in there and clean it up – expose the chaos to the order only light can bring.
And just like the messes found in the back corners of my pantry cabinets and in the creepy abyss known at “Elle’s Closet” (shhhh, don’t tell her I said that!), we, ourselves, do so much better when we’re exposed to the light, don’t we? We can see the cobwebs to tear them down, wipe off the dust that’s been accumulating in areas that have been neglected, and find those things that just no longer fit to dispose of and lighten our load.
If I’m not careful, my spirit can become as disheveled and disorganized as my closet. It can become full of things like haughty pride and self-pity when I feel neglected or taken advantage of. Or, maybe unforgiveness just sits there eroding my heart into a festering, selfish wound that’s as ugly as anything I may have left over from the late 80’s fashion trends.
Even simple boredom can turn the brightest of treasures into a drab and tarnished trinket that’s fallen between the cracks of the shelves and wall, only to be sadly forgotten in the junk that lies in little piles waiting to be tossed into the garbage.
But the second I open the window, let the Light in, expose the darkness to the Sun? Well, that’s when transformation and clarity begin. The once-drab looks shiny. The no-longer-useful can be seen for what it has become and be thrown away.
Sounds good, right? But what am I really talking about here?
I’m talking about YOU!
I’m talking about those treasures that you push down inside that you think don’t matter anymore. Don’t you know they can transform someone’s day? That skill that once made you giggle and sparkle just to think about can revitalize your current life space. Those thoughts that bring you energy and joy to entertain even for a moment can send ripple effects of happiness that you cannot imagine. THOSE.
Maybe it isn’t just your closets and cabinets that need a good exposure to sunlight – maybe it’s you. You belong in the light, sweet friend. You do your best work in the light. I don’t mean limelight. I mean Light. As in, walking with and in God’s will for your life. It may not include loads of fanfare and paparazzi. In fact, for most of us, it won’t. But it all matters, regardless of the attention it gets from others!
It also means we shouldn’t ever be afraid to expose the darkness hidden away inside of us to God. We can confidently and repentantly let those things up and out to Him who heals! Those things you try to pretend don’t exist? Show them to the Light. You ARE a “daughter of the day” – start acting like it and BELIEVE it!
“Belonging to the day” means that we aren’t afraid to let God’s light go before us, thrive in us, and shine behind us to highlight the gifts He gave us to use. THAT is what I want to be showcasing on my shelves, don’t you?
Sometimes, things need to be discarded. But sometimes, just a little Light of the Lord and some TLC are exactly what you need to transform an overlooked or broken treasure.
Let’s use this week to shine the light into the corners of our spirit’s closet, exposing things that need healing and celebrating things that have been forgotten! I’m excited to hear what you find in there, sweet friends.
Following along with Pure Joy 2014: The Remix? Here’s what’s on tap for this week:
- Find or print the scripture card for 1 Thessalonians 5:5 (we are using the ERV translation this week!) and display it in your house! Say It and Pray It!
- Keep on reading Everyday a Friday by Joel Osteen!
- Respond to the Evite for our Pure Joy Dinner #1 OR start planning your own dinner with friends for June 17th!
- Enjoy this link to Mandissa’s inspiring song, “Overcomer”! (Spoiler alert – you may cry some happy tears over this, especially if you are a fan of Robin Roberts, Scotty Hamilton, and Gabrielle Giffords!) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b8VoUYtx0kw&feature=kp
Have a blessed week, everyone!
Peace, love, and PURE JOY!
Up next Monday: EVERY day is a good day!