Clutter

I’m doing a women’s book study right now, going through Richard Foster’s The Celebration of Discipline. This has been one of my favorite books for many years… always convicting, always timely. Well, this week is simplicity. My first thought was easy peasy! I’ve been working on simplifying my life for a while now. Even just comparing my life now to my life six months ago, I have simplified so very much. Of course, whenever we get prideful like that, we’re in for an awakening…

As I was reading the chapter, I quickly realized that there is one major area of my life that needs simplifying… my mind. Yes, my mind is full of clutter. Now, I know I’m in grad school and part of that process is apparently to see how much info you can cram into your brain in the shortest amount of time possible. But this mind-clutter is more than academia. It’s all the peripheral, superfluous “knowledge” that I manage to accumulate throughout the day and week. My mom has frequently referred to my mind as a filing cabinet and just the other day my dear brother accused me of having a memory like a steel trap. What can I say? My brain is sticky… stuff sticks in there.

At this realization of having a cluttered mind, I had to step back and consider… do I really need to read 12 different perspectives on the Chilean rescue efforts? Praise the Lord it was a success, but do I need every possible journalist’s insight on the situation? Probably not. Is every detail of David and Courtney Cox Arquette’s separation and divorce vital to my own life’s happiness? Ummm, no, it actually makes me sad. Does life necessitate an hourly update on the mundane activities of my family, friends and “friends”? As much as I love you and love knowing what’s going on in your lives, the answer is definitely no. How about one more recipe, knitting pattern or sewing project? Nope, I am undeniably on overload already.

As I thought about all the extras I cram into my brain in light of Foster’s writings on simplicity I was suddenly hit with the enormity of the verse he bases this chapter on… seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness and all these things shall be added unto you, Matthew 6:33. If I am intently seeking the kingdom of God, what business do I have seeking this earthly kingdom at all? And isn’t that what I’m doing when I take a 5 minute study break to check the latest pop gossip or when I eat my breakfast with the day’s breaking news… isn’t that a means of seeking this earthly kingdom instead of focusing on God’s kingdom?

So I made a decision… time to declutter. Which right now means… I’ve given up the internet… gasp, shock, shriek of horror!

Now, I’m not abandoning the internet all together and I’m not trying to say there’s no room in any Christian’s life for these things, I’m just getting rid of what seems to be nonessential in my life right now. I still have to go online for classes and I do occasionally get emails of importance from important people like professors and my mom. But other than that… we’re taking a break (Did anyone else just hear Ross yell “WE WERE ON A BREAK!” No? Just me? Eh, oh well.)

No Facebook
No CNN
No Crossword Puzzle
No Slate with their strange and interesting columns
No Pioneer Woman, Bakerella, CakeWrecks, Ravelry
No blog, well sort of…

Wonderfully enough, I’m able to post blogs without going online… The Lord doth provide! And maybe, once I’ve cleared out some of this mental clutter, I’ll actually be able to get some coherent thoughts together and blog more than once a month! Won’t that be a treat!

It’s been one day and I gotta say, already I feel a sense of relief. If you haven’t read The Celebration of Discipline, I highly recommend it. I also highly recommend decluttering… your mind, your home, your schedule, your closet… wherever the clutter is keeping you from the kingdom.

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