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Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Junk Drawers Beware!

1-3So clean house! Make a clean sweep of malice and pretense, envy and hurtful talk. You've had a taste of God. Now, like infants at the breast, drink deep of God's pure kindness. Then you'll grow up mature and whole in God.
(I Peter 2:1-3)

Many of us engage in some sort of spring cleaning each year.  Garages get gutted and reorganized.  Closets are emptied of last season's fashions and they are replaced with the capris, short sleeved tops and cooler fashions.  The kitchen cabinets may even get a "going over" with a lemon oil!  But...I bet your "junk drawer" doesn't get cleaned out!  It is amazing to me how many "cleaning" tasks we undertake, all the while leaving one of the messiest things untouched!

There are probably some "junk drawers" we might have spiritually that have long avoided any examination!  As long as those parts of our lives remain untouched, we are still going to be a "mess" in those areas!  And the sad thing is, just like with our junk drawers, we probably don't even know what it is that we have hid away in the recesses of our "internal junk drawers"!

Peter tells us to clean house!  Not with a selective kind of avoidance of the "junk drawers", but with a clean sweep!  The same principles that apply to the cleaning out of the "physical" junk drawer in our homes can apply to the "spiritual" junk drawers of our hearts, minds, and emotions.  The first step is to actually get so fed up with not being able to "cram" anything more into it!  There is a motivator in not being able to hide any longer!

Next, we need to actually begin the process of "unpacking" the junk drawer.  That means we bring the stuff hidden there out where it can be seen and dealt with.  Some of it is probably junk that can be dealt with best by throwing it away - getting rid of it completely.  These types of things are probably stuff hidden away that we really don't need to be holding onto any longer - like resentments, slights, and worries.

Then we need to actually put the stuff that is worth keeping - the stuff we can use to help us grow - into its correct place.  If you are like me, screwdrivers have a tendency to gravitate to the junk drawer instead of the workbench!  Not sure how that happens, but it is a fact of life.  Spiritually, I get a lot of "tools" along the way that seem to clutter my junk drawer - if I were to actually begin to put them to use as they were intended, it would be amazing what results might be produced!

For example, if I begin to apply the principles of forgiveness that I have tucked away from that sermon a couple months ago, that conversation with a friend a week ago, and the lyrics of a song that keep running over in my head, to the ugly way I feel about that one individual that keeps "doing me wrong" without even knowing that he/she is doing it, I might actually learn a thing or two about being forgiving!

See, the junk drawers don't always contain garbage - but there is probably a combination of useless stuff tucked away amongst the helpful stuff.  We need to periodically allow the "spring cleaning" to occur in order to really find out what we have tucked away in our minds, emotions, and hearts.  When we do, we find out that we possess more than we imagined!  It might be time for a little "spring cleaning" in your life.  If so, why not begin with that "junk drawer" you've crammed so tight - it could amaze you to find what you have hidden there!