The last couple of weeks have been fun (read sarcasm here, folks).
About a year and a half ago, “The Hub” and I did a major remodel job on our 33-year old house. He did a lot of the work – he’s really so handy.
However, to accomplish everything we wanted to do, we had to “empty” the house of just about everything.
Last Tuesday, I admitted that I have had the “hoarding disease.” So, there was a LOT of stuff to get rid of to empty out the house.
And I’m not good with getting rid of things…
Because to me, they’re not just things – they’re memories! I’m sentimental to a fault. I have trouble letting go. And I insisted on looking at EVERYTHING before it went out the door to the Goodwill store, the garage, or Dumpster Land.
It was a pain-staking process. That’s how I looked at it anyway. “The Hub” said it was more like a pain-TAKING process. But I digress…
The remodel job took just over 8 months – perhaps a little slower because we did a lot of the work ourselves.
But it finally got DONE!
It’s been a privilege to have a “new” look in a home that I’ve owned for 27 years!
And so, for a year or so, we’ve been relaxing and enjoying “Kirby’s Kabin!”
All was good with the world…
Until “The Hub” came up with this novel idea.
“Hey, wouldn’t it be nice if we could park at least ONE of the cars in the garage?”
Rumor has it, that’s what garages are for – they are not large storage spaces – who knew?!
So, the Great Garage Clean-Out Project has commenced…
I’m not having a good time.
It was VERY, VERY hard doing this in the house. And the garage represents “all the other stuff that wouldn’t fit in the house but I just couldn’t part with…” And I am NOT wanting to go through all the trials and tribulations of sorting it all out again.
But…it has to be done.
So, armed with a face mask (it’s dusty out there) and surgical gloves (it’s filthy out there) and the proper cleaning outfit (it’s dusty and filthy and yucky out there), “The Hub” and I have been attacking The Pile….
Of stuff, and more stuff.
It’s almost as hard as it was when I dug through the Hoarding House. There’s still a lot of things that aren’t things – they’re memories. And I still have to fight my urge to “hold on” to things of the past.
For instance, there’s the bedroom set that my dad and mom took me out to buy. I was 14 at the time. I’d spent the past six years sharing a bedroom with my sister. But we had just moved to a new home, and I was going to have my OWN room. As if that wasn’t great enough, they decided that it was time to buy my OWN furniture!
I can remember wandering through the furniture store, looking at all the lovely bedroom sets. And then, there it was – MY furniture, MY bedroom set. It was a pale green, with nice little white accents. (We’re talking the 1960’s here…) We bought the set, and I anxiously awaited its delivery.
I set all the pieces – a twin bed and headboard, a night-stand, a dresser, a desk and chair, a mirror – in all the places I had planned out. It was wonderful!
And now it was time to say goodbye – after 42 years – to an old friend.
There’s just no one in our family, or anyone we know, that wants an outdated, well-loved bedroom set. And I just know that somewhere there will be someone who can use it, who needs it…and it isn’t me anymore.
So, “The Hub” graciously took pictures of it, so I could hold on to the memories, and we packed it off to Goodwill.
This hasn’t been fun – I’ve already determined that this is the stuff I NEED to keep. And yet, I have to get rid of more. There have been plenty of tears…
It reminds me of my life.
How I’ve done a major “re-model” of my heart. Gotten rid of a lot of non-spiritual stuff. Let go of a lot of sinful things. Refinished and repainted – turned an old, prodigal heart into a faithful follower once again.
And it was hard.
But I’ve enjoyed the new life, the renovated life of faith.
However, there’s still the garage…
The secret, inner places where I put all the “stuff” I didn’t want to give away. The things that I’ve insisted holding on to. The things that are stashed away in shelves and drawers. The things that aren’t in my main house – the house that everyone sees on the outside. The things that are dusty and filthy and yucky…
But God is saying to me, “It’s time to empty the garage.”
Oh no. It’s going to be painful. These are the things I DON’T want to give away, Lord. The things I WANT to hold on to. I’ve done this once, wasn’t that good enough?
“No, My child, I want to dig deeper.”
And so, lately I’ve been “suiting up” – girding myself with His Word, praying my heart out – and entering into the garage of my heart.
And it’s hard.
Because some of these things aren’t things…they’re ME.
But I’m not alone in this process.
HE IS WITH ME – every painful step of the way.
Helping me make MORE room for Him…
And that is completely worth it – even though there have been plenty of tears.
Is it time to work on your garage?
“Create in me a clean heart, O God…” (Psalm 51:10)
BLOG = “Blessedly Leaning On God!”