Long, long ago, in that galaxy far, far away where I used to keep my drawers organized and the bathroom fixtures polished, my husband asked me once why I thought it was such a big deal to have clean closets.
"It's okay for closets to be junky. That's what closets are for," he explained. "That's why they have doors. Close the door, and then you don't have to worry about the mess."
I am sure Steve was trying to make me feel better about my growing inability to stay on top of all the clutter in our house.
Well, since tackling this 30 Days of Dominion Challenge, while struggling to dig out from under decades of just "closing the door," I finally have an answer for why it is - YES, it is - a big deal to routinely clean out and organize the closets:
Because, if I neglect the closets, sooner or later, inevitably, the mess is going to take over the rest of the house.
This is what my closet looks like right now:
Now, maybe you're thinking, "Well, that closet is not so bad, Camille. After all, if the mess bothers you," - never mind the health hazard of having to climb over all that stuff when I need something off the top shelf! - "you can always just shut the door."
Except that, if you've been keeping up with the Before and After pictures on Facebook, you know that the mess in my closet is not confined to the closet. It is ALL OVER THE FREAKING HOUSE.
Why do I need to keep my closets clean? Because if I don't, pretty soon I won't be keeping anything else clean either. There's no room to put this in the closet - I'll just stick it here on the dresser. Oh, the top of the dresser is full? Well, I can stash this on the bookshelf...
Before long, the mess that was hidden in my closet seems to be taking over my entire life.
In fact, the mess gets so big, so out-of-hand, so everywhere, that I give up trying to deal with it at all: It's MY house, right?, so I can pile junk everywhere if I want. I'm not trying to impress anybody. If you don't like the mess, you can just leave.
You can already tell where I'm going with this, right?
This past week, it has humbled me to realize that my closet, my dresser, the bookshelves, the not-sewing area, all of these are a reflection of myself - of my heart: there is crap all over everywhere.
In fact, there is so much clutter and garbage that I don't think I can muster the will to even begin to deal with it.
On top of that, there are those who tell me, "It's not that big of a deal. Just ignore the mess." (That's why closets - and hearts - have doors, right?)
And there are others who get a panicked look, like they are afraid that if I start dealing with MY mess, I might uncover some of their mess in the process. They start running offense: "Don't even think about going there. Step away from the junk. Haven't you ever heard that it's better to let sleeping dogs lie?"
There is too much garbage, more than I can deal with. I should ignore it. Even the people around me say I should just close the door and walk away.
I am defeated before I even begin, both from within and from without. Sigh.
People, I need a really BIG, indefatigable, Muscle Man Jesus with a front-end loader and a 50-gallon drum of Clorox solution to come in and save me before I suffocate under the weight of all the garbage in my life.
Big, indefatigable, Muscle Man Jesus does just exactly that...and more.
He comes in shoveling and scrubbing and hauling trash to the burn pile. I see the thinnest sliver of light slice through the gloom of all the clutter. I catch my first breath of fresh air.
All the while that He is digging through my mountain of mess and yuckiness, He is singing and smiling. Pretty soon, I find myself smiling, too. He hands me a shovel, and invites me to start digging alongside Him. In spite of the sweat and the dirt and the sore muscles in my back, I find that a sweet melody begins to play over my lips, too.
It's the song of a prisoner set free. Free of the junk. Free, and walking freer every day.
|I almost gave up on the 30 Days challenge when I considered|
tackling the Not-Sewing area. I sat on the floor and cried.
|Today, however, I feel like a party is in order!|