Getting Rid of the Clutter

By Darlene Thorne
Worship Leader, EXW Contributor
November 30, 2022

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After moving into our home last year, I had not realized ALL of the things we have accumulated over our nineteen years of marriage and two children later. There was just so much stuff! I was giving away things, throwing away things and putting other things in their places. It was so amazing because as I was cleaning my house just the other day, I found out something that really spoke volumes to me. It was the stuff, again! I opened a drawer and there it was, STUFF! I looked in my closet and there it was, STUFF! I examined the house from top to bottom and found more STUFF! Not that the house was dirty, but in the years’ time that I had gotten rid of all the stuff I thought I did not need, it was apparent to me that I had just replaced the old stuff with new stuff. The things that weren’t necessarily bad, but I just didn’t really need it.

Our pastor had been speaking to us about being successful in our lives and one of the things he mentioned was the difference between profitability and necessity. In I Corinthians 6:12 it says, “Everything is permissible for me-but not everything is beneficial. Everything is permissible for me-but I will not be mastered by anything,” (NIV). In the King James it tells us that “…all things are lawful but I will not be brought under the power of any.” Once again I got rid of the stuff. It was not bad stuff, just papers I had no intention of keeping, old articles, circulars from the local grocery store that I don’t even shop at and my children’s knick knacks. The list goes on. None of these things are bad in themselves, they just kept the table covered and the mail basket filled with unnecessary things. This is when the Lord spoke intimately with me.

He began to urge me to clean out the drawers of the things I didn’t need and not to replace them with anything. He compelled me to empty my closet of those things I knew I would not be wearing again. He showed me areas that needed to be painted and other things I needed to do in my home. I asked God why was there such an urgency to get rid of things and change things in my home. He revealed to me something that I pray ministers to you as well. He showed me how much stuff can take us off course of the purpose we are to fulfill. Just as the things in my home were keeping me and others from seeing the beauty of the home, our spiritual lives can be so full of clutter that no one else can see the call of God on our lives in its truest form. We are so encumbered about with doing church work and doing and doing and doing, that we don’t take time to clear off the stuff and spend time focusing on what we are to really do. For that matter, because we have been doing and doing and doing, we don’t really even know what we have been called to do.

God ministered to me that we as His people are to keep the main thing the main thing. Do not be sidetracked and overwhelmed by the things that may be “lawful” but not “expedient.” As my husband says, “It may be a nice to do, but not a need to do.” When we know we have been set apart for service, it is so important that we don’t lose sight of what we need to be reaching for. As we clear out the clutter in our lives we are able then to really hear with clarity what the Lord is saying. I know that when I cleaned out my drawers and went back days later to get something from one of them, it felt good to be able to find it immediately. Just as in the natural, so it is in the spiritual. When we clear out the clutter of unhealthy thoughts, television commercials, you know, the STUFF, and fill it with the word of God, the things that are “…true, honest, just, pure, lovely and of a good report…,” (Philippians 4:8) it’s easy to open the “drawer” of our hearts in order to find what we need when we need it.

Why not try it today? Clear out one space in your home and liken it to clearing out a space in your heart. You may find that it is easier to find things and it may also be easier for you to hear the voice of the Lord for the absence of the “clutter” in our minds.

Darlene Thorne
Worship Leader, EXW Contributor
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