Does it Bring You Joy?
Have you seen the latest Netflix program Tidying Up with Marie Kondo? When her book The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up came out, I walked past it many times without picking it up. I wasn’t sure I wanted to read more about how to keep my house clean—I was doing a lot of cleaning already and who wants to do more or be told they are doing it all wrong? It is hard enough already! But after the book became very popular, I decided to see for myself what the fuss was all about. I must say I found it very useful and encouraging! It opened up new possibilities of keeping things at home better organized, which would actually make my life easier in the end! To this day, we fold our tops differently and keep them stacked in our dressers according to the “Kondo method.”
Marie’s book was also an invitation to take stock of what things we used and needed on a daily basis. A big part of Marie’s philosophy for organizing your home is to ask ourselves if the physical objects we have “give us joy.” If they don’t, we are to thank them for their use, give away what we can, and throw the rest out. If you watch her Netflix program, the results of the families decluttering under Marie’s watchful and helpful eye are life changing! If you have ever decluttered yourself, you know how freeing it is to get rid of all the unnecessary things that are weighing us down!
On a spiritual level, Lent is an invitation to ask ourselves what inner decluttering we need to do.
What emotions, thoughts or situations in our lives give us joy and which ones weigh us down? We can improve our spiritual well-being by getting rid of what is unnecessary. This Lent, I am working on giving up worrying. I am good at worrying, but it is huge burden to bear. It weighs me down while it is also truly unnecessary. Philippians 4:6 tells us: “Do not be anxious about anything, but with prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends understanding will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Doesn’t that sound like a better choice—to declutter my worrying and let God replace it with peace?
What do you need to pluck out or get rid of in your spiritual life? Where do you need to simplify your life in a way that would invite more peace and joy? Or do you need to physically declutter your life to allow for more mental and spiritual freedom? Lent is an invitation to do just that.