Spring Cleaning Step 1: Prepare

spring tip 1 prepareSpring is (finally) here and summer is fast on it’s heals. For those of us in the western states (like my gorgeous Wyoming), it has been a long hard winter. The cabin fever was definitely taking a toll on my husband and I by mid-Februrary. Now it is April, and I have taken on a much needed purging project of our home… if only I can stay inside long enough to conquer it!

Here’s my first step in cleaning my home, and my heart, to better glorify God.

Step 1: Prepare.

  • Light a candle: It instantly makes the room feel pleasant. It also reminds me of the presence of God working in my heart.
  • Set up 3 bins labeled:
    1. garbage
    2. give away
    3. sell.

If I can’t find a place for an item while I am cleaning, it goes into one of those bins.

  • Invite God to work: I prepare my heart for the Holy Spirit’s work by singing “Here For You” by Matt Redman.

Let our praise be Your welcome
Let our songs be a sign
We are here for You

We welcome You with praise
Almighty God of love
Be welcomed in this place

spring tip 1 prep verse

  • Start with a clean space (home)/Come as you are (heart): 

In my home, it is hard to sort, purge, then organize things if they are not ready to be put away (like dirty dishes and clothes). Starting with a clean space gives me a good baseline to work with.

The complete opposite is true in my spiritual life. So often I want to “clean up” before I meet with Jesus. For instance, if I have caught myself gossiping or talking rudely, I want to give myself a couple days to speak kind words, blog about the evils of gossip, and diligently guard my tongue. After I have “cleaned up my act,” then I will sit down and meet with God. I feel my repentance is genuine and proven, so there is no need to feel guilty anymore.
There are two major flaws in this approach to spiritual spring cleaning:
1. I am relying on my own perceived ability to wash myself clean.
I don’t want to turn to God for sanctification, I want to do it myself. It gives me a sense of pride and control. This good deed, of course, is covering sin with sin, and appears like further filth in Gods eyes (filthy rags). My spiritual tidy-up is not a true form of repentance.
2. My “cleaning up before coming to Jesus” isn’t needed.
On the cross, Jesus said “it is finished.” Past, present, and future sins have already been paid for through HIS work. My “work” to pay for it is just a joke, and perhaps slap in the face to the One who died for them.
spring clean prep quote
Instead, I should come to God wholly acknowledging my dirty cluttered selfish heart.I can do so with confidence and gratefulness because I know God already sees the finished product: a clean, organized, shining image of His Son. The Holy Spirit does the work to reconcile my perspective with God’s, and I remain humbly thanking Jesus for His payment for it all.

As you tidy up a room before deep cleaning, take a moment with me to acknowledge our helplessness before our God “who is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” 1 John 1:9

 

Campfire Check In:

These simple ideas help me get into the groove for deep spiritual and domestic cleaning. How do you get ready for a cleaning-spree?

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