This past weekend, my husband and I tackled one of the biggest projects in our house . . . our kid's rooms! It had to be divide and conquer in these treacherous toy landmines. So I paired up with our nine-year-old daughter, while Steven joined our six-year-old son.
I’ve heard that many people participate in an annual activity known as, “Spring Cleaning.” Not this house. We are more in line with the every-five-years-plan called, “Whatever Month We Pick To Clean Is Good Enough.”
Do you know how many toys kids accrue over time? Even with a Consigning Queen mother, our children still have more than enough possessions.
"CONSIGN." It’s the most frequent and threatening verb spoken in our house. This word rolls off my tongue faster than they can open their presents on Christmas. As soon as something comes in the house, I am looking to see what can go out.
So when it became impossible to walk a clear path in our kid's rooms without tripping on something, it was time for our half-a-decade cleaning day.
In our search for the lost carpet, we made four piles: Keep, Consign, Donate, Garbage.
Each of them kept a fair amount of toys. It was amazing what they were able to find when they cleaned. So many rediscovered items were returned to their rightful places.
Every time I heard the chosen word, “consign” from my children, it was like beautiful music to my ears! Seriously. It became rhythmic: consign, consign, consign.
Several toys were purposely set aside for donations. (Their school is collecting for kids in Texas who lost toys in flooding.)
And then, there was the garbage pile--or should I say, the multiple piles! We filled up four large garbage bags with . . . you guessed it--trash. Broken electronics, decapitated dolls, plastic packaging to toys, glow sticks that lost their luminosity several months ago, old homework from last year, crumbled paper airplanes, cracked plastic Easter eggs, markers without caps, used band-aids (gross), and the list goes on . . .
And as usual, this life experience made me stop and think about spiritual connections:
Just as we (the parents) had no space to walk in our children’s rooms, sometimes our Heavenly Father is not given space to walk with us in our lives. It's not because God isn't powerful enough to step into our mess, (He's always present and can handle anything) but sometimes our minds are not cleared enough to walk the path of life with Him.
Remember how many forgotten treasures my kids found? These items never left their bedrooms, but their living quarters were too filled with other undesired things to even notice the precious misplaced articles. First, the garbage needed to get out, and then some unwanted items had to be cleared away.
Consign your mind. Get rid of what is not needed in order to make space for what is good.
When I consign toys, I hand them over to a store in exchange for cash. When we trade out our old thoughts and behaviors of this world, we get to exchange space in our hearts and minds for treasure far greater than money--Jesus. This decision results in something much better than a clean room . . . it leads to a transformed life!
“Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.” (Romans 12:2 NLT)
Remember, some of my children’s most precious gifts were lost in plain sight. In order for us to experience the love and power that is available right in front of us, we need to clear out the garbage and useless habits that block our spiritual paths. This is how we make room to walk in a relationship with Jesus.
“Create in me a clean heart, O God. Renew a loyal spirit within me.” (Psalm 51:10 NLT)