The gifts have been unwrapped, looked through, played with, and tried on. Within in the next few weeks (if not days if this unseasonably warm weather stays around), the decorations will come down, and we will put all our gifts away in their new home. This is a great time to go ahead and clean out a closet or two.
I’m amazed at the amount of stuff we as a society store. There are self-storage units being built like hives at every turn. What are we storing? I get the need for short-term storage, but we would not have what is now a multi-million-dollar industry if it were all short-term. I respect the family who keeps clothing for hand-me-downs. True confessions, I currently have three coffee tables in my basement that I’ve offered some of the young people in our lives who are planning their first apartment. But we have accepted living in abundance, to become living in gluttony.
Allow me to challenge you to clean out at least one closet (or one part of your storage area) a weekend in the month of January. It’s a month of post-holiday quiet and all the newness of a new year. You’re going to be making resolutions anyway in the next few days, here’s one that is easily attainable. A quick win in the first month.
It was December 27th. We took down the tree, cleaned up the needles and began to put away our gifts. With all three of us at home we took advantage of the time to move some furniture around and complete some “honey-do” items. One thing led to another and before I knew it our upstairs hallway looked like the bedrooms had puked up every extra piece of furniture. To pick up, sort, throw away, and put away was like eating spaghetti.
Opening the closet to put something away opened another opportunity to organize and create space. The best approach I’ve found is to “one touch” stuff. Pick something up, find it a home and put it there – don’t go down rabbit trails of new projects, just make note of them and move on. Just keep working it and eventually you’ll find the floor (or the top of your desk – this method works well at the office).
Today I am thankful that there is balance in the universe. Call it what you like, yin/yang, chi, ebb/flow, what goes around comes around. Our brilliant Creator put order and balance in play with His first command to take that which was formless and give it form. With each act of creation He provided opposites to balance each other out. He gave us light and separated it from the darkness; land was divided by water, creatures of the water and the land, male and female – even good and evil.
Each end of the scale has its place and purpose. In life we have seasons of serving and seasons of being served. When those seasons get too out of balance one can find themselves either exhausted from pouring out and not being poured into, or they could be found wallowing in being needy. There will always be those among us in need, but even the least of these has the ability to do something for others. Time is free.
Yes, I believe what goes around, comes around; what you sow you will reap. However, it is not our role to be continually looking around the corner to reap quickly. Sometimes it takes a while to arrive on the other side of sowing. Just as you can’t rush the oceans movement from high tide to low tide, you can’t rush the laws of natural balance. The journey between the two is what forms our character. All we can be responsible for is our role, attitude or place in the great balance of life we live in.