A Clearing Amid the Clutter


The new year has motivated me to organize and purge. 

I got rid of some books sitting on my shelves that I didn't even like that much when I first read them. I threw out an old bedspread I thought I might reuse that greeted me every time I opened a closet. I parted with broken costume jewelry that I somehow never got around to fixing. 

I organized my ribbons and wrapping paper drawer. I tackled the bins of tools and cleaning products under my kitchen sink. 

I wondered why I was keeping assorted bottles of glue and bags of nuts and bolts and gizmos I couldn’t even identify. 

But I did find the cover for my chandelier. Except it was for the chandelier in my old house. I wonder if the girl who is living there now has been looking for it?



So I want to reorganize my life too. Get rid of the clutter in my head and in my soul. 

There are experiences I’d like to clear out, chapters in my life I wish I could trash, and events I pretty much consider as junk. It seems to me that these life-episodes are a confusing, jumbled mess. And I feel like I want to edit them out of the story of my life. 

But maybe I should reorganize these thoughts.

Maybe I ought to reconsider what I regard as clutter. 

Maybe what I think are the messy times of my life should be looked at as something with a little more value. 

When I think about the times that tangled me up, they were really just stopovers on my journey that brought me to a new place. 

Some of those places were dry and dusty and left me feeling parched and burned. But eventually I continued moving forward. 

And realized that I came away refreshed. Or headed down a new path. Or left with a new perspective. 

I’m realizing that maybe this jumbled mess of experiences isn’t clutter at all. And I should keep them as a reminder of where I’ve been. And how far I’ve come. 

Because up ahead on my life's path, I think I see a clearing where I thought only clutter was.


A year ago I wrote about my aversion to Facebook. (You can read it here.) I felt like everyone’s page was shouting “Look at my perfect husband, my perfect kids, my perfect life.” 

And I didn’t have much to showcase. But a friend helped me design a personal page with a professional look that included my blog banner. She locked it down with all the privacy controls available. No crazy photos. Not much personal information. 

But she told me I'd have to post at least once a month. Which seemed like a lot to me. But I did it. Old friends found me. I wondered who cared what I was doing since sometimes I just posted a photo of a dessert I'd made, but my friends cheered me on by liking my posts and commenting. 

Somehow I was getting used to being on Facebook. 

And now I'm going to co-lead a small group on Facebook through the website (in)courage. This strikes me as ironic. But I think it’s part of the ongoing journey God has planned for me. 

To bring me to this very place. Where I didn't even know I wanted to be. This clearing where I've landed amid some of the clutter-experiences of my life. That I might be able to use again in sharing with others.

I thought Facebook would be the last place I'd want to interact and connect until I realized it’s part of my God-sized dream. 

Because I want to be an encourager. To share and grow with other women in the (in)courage community. 

Where I'll be posting status updates, sending notifications and liking posts. With the amazing women I'm going to meet. 

And hope to call my friends.




I'm linking up with fellow God-sized dreamers today at GodSizedDreams.com. Click the image to read their stories! 




Comments

  1. I read a LOT of blogs - and you are officially my favorite blogger. Your words get me right in the gut every time, and I can relate to you so much. I took a spiritual gifts test not long ago, and my #1 gift was that of encouragement. I love to encourage people - and didn't even really realize it until I learned that it was my special gift from God! I would love to friend you on Facebook - be looking for a friend request from me! :)) - Shawna

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    1. Shawna,
      Every time I read your beautiful words, I am so grateful for your encouragement here -- and yes, you ARE an encourager! :) I am now friends with you on Facebook! :)

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  2. Exciting the opportunities that God provides when you listen and obey! :) I was an (in)courage leader last session and loved it. God told me "no" for this season though...and while I wanted to do things my way I felt this was a time that I too needed to listen and obey! Thanks for linking up with us over at God-sized Dreams!

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    1. Kristin,
      I'm so glad your experience as a leader was positive and enjoyable! I'm looking forward to it!

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  3. You have officially motivated me to organize my life in multiple ways! Congratulations on the social media group! Thats really impressive! You will be a great leader!

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    1. Brittany,
      All the credit is yours for pushing me onto Facebook -- and of course the credit for the lovely page goes to you, too! You are a priceless encouragement to me!

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  4. Great blog and I totally get you. Well, maybe not totally. But the part you shared today. I get so much encouragement from knowing that some of the people in the Bible that God used were like me..."Wait! What?"...when God "called" them. So God can use even me...and you...and in ways we might not choose for ourselves.

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    1. Charlotte,
      Love reading how God uses people in the Bible and their oh-so-human reactions! Thanks for stopping by and thank you for your kind words!

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  5. Wow, congratulations!! I am so excited to hear about your group, and I'm glad you inspired me to drive up my Facebook page too :)

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    1. I'm very excited about co-leading this group, too! Thanks for your kind words!

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  6. How awesome! Or rather as the song by Pastor Charles Jenkins says, "Our GOD is AWESOME"! :) So happy it's working out for you. Wishing you all the best as your continue to pursue your God-sized DREAMS! :)

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    1. Alexis,
      Thank you for stopping by -- and yes, following God is awesome!

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  7. Beautiful words! Looking forward to linking up with you here :)

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    1. Lanette,
      So appreciate you stopping by! Grateful for you!

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  8. Great blog and I love your site. You are encouraging and motivating me....especially on monday evenings!

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    1. Susan,
      You make Monday nights a pleasure! I love teaching kids with you!

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  9. Super article! Evey aspect of our lives has value and draws us closer to God and makes us who we are. Keep it all! You have such a wonderful way with words.....getting to the heart of things every time! Remember - after the clutter, the clearing....bringing it all into focus. Great article!!

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    1. Sharon,
      Love this: "Every aspect of our lives has value and draws us closer to God and makes us who we are." Thanks for being here!

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  10. Ok, so this is downright strange at this point!! Our stories are so similar AGAIN!! I too couldn't stand FB. Rarely used it (did have an acct though). Until I became a member of the God-Sized Dream team and that was how we interacted so I had to use it. And oh my goodness, I had no clue all the blessings that would come via those FB connections! : ) Ultimately, even, the new website - which then led me HERE!!! : )

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    1. Christine,
      I love this! I had a deactivated account lying dormant on FB for a long time before I decided to try it out again -- we must be soul sisters! :)

      Delete

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