Making a card is a treat to myself for all the organizing I’ve done in this first week of the year.
I began this year by making myself tend to my creative area - much overdue. I’d be too shy to show a “before” photo of how everything had piled up, it happens so gradually that you don’t really notice until its reached epic proportions. After collecting supplies for the last year - and having people generously save for me (ribbon, jewellery bits etc) it had all begun to be in danger of looking like a jumble sale. I woke one morning and opened a cupboard and took every single thing out so there would be no turning back. I thought it would take me two hours. It took me two days. But its worth it, today I was able to enjoy a newly cleaned and organized space and it feels like the happiest place on the planet to be.
Its hard not to feel guilty while devoting this time to cleaning up after myself. As one friend put it “I find it easier to clean someone else’s place than my own” - and why is this? I had to battle a nagging thought in my mind I should be “doing this” (visiting people, going to meetings, creating things, helping someone else clean up)" Anything, it seems, other than dealing with the disarray I’d built up.
I often take experiences I go through in my daily life and lay it on the blueprint of my Christian faith to make sense of it all. As I search scripture I’m drawn to the passages of Proverbs 31 (click the link to read The Message version of this passage) I believe it clearly states we are to look after our homes and families. Yes, we do need to reach out to the community, but what good is this if we neglect duties in our own lives to a point that should something happen that puts us out of commission we would have to rely on someone else to come in and pick up what we failed to do? Now I am not saying we keep a spotless existence in our homes but there definitely is a healthy balance.
There is a saying:
“Every possession possesses you”
This makes sense - the more you have the more it needs taking care of. We must take responsibility to, as much as we are able, provide a clean and inviting living space, look after our families first and then I believe the Lord will give us plenty of opportunity to go forth and bless others. I know, personally, that when I maintain my living space to a certain level its much easier to manage and takes far less time than when I let it build up and it continues to be a repetitive cycle of clean/purge several times a year. Like a Proverbs 31 woman I desire to find a pattern that works for me for managing my life.
Last year I found a tremendous resource through Midday Connection - this podcast (audio) featuring Marcia Ramsland who is an organizing pro. She made it simple for me to get back on track. If you find yourself with some time today (while you clean, or do dishes for example) why not listen to the podcast? I shared Marcia’s resource with several friends and I personally think this is the key to the success of this challenge - doing it with others (even via a chat or IM program) so you don’t feel so alone, and also to be accountable to one another, to feel like we are not the only ones who let things “pile up” (watch the junk drawers and messy cupboards etc pop open to each other ) and to inspire and encourage each other. Anyone want to join me (via email and blog) to tackle other areas of our houses? Just leave a comment and we can connect!
I do think there is a time and a place to help others do this too - if there is someone who is ill or elderly and cannot do it for themselves. I am not in any way advocating putting your own needs before real needs in the community - I am not saying we should say no to helping someone who you could be blessing when the Lord impresses this on your heart or to not help others only after your house is so clean you could lick off the floors. I AM suggesting you lay out a plan you can do in manageable increments to get your own space up to a level which makes it easy to be able to drop everything at home to free yourself up easier. As I’ve done this in the past I find it actually works out nicely that when you suddenly invite people in, with a little fore-thought, your house is ready to go!
But if you’re a Mom who always does this for your child instead of instructing them how to do this for themselves as they grow up (because lets face it - its far easier and quicker to do it yourself than oversee the painful and onerous task of making your kids do it) you are setting them up for failure later as this is a necessary life skill set. So you need to set the EXAMPLE but not do it for them.
Do YOU have some tips and advice of value here that might be a help to me - especially in the area of crafting?
At any rate, I’m blogging you from my refreshing creative space and I’ll just stop now and share the card I made:
This week’s challenge is based on:
It is better to trust in the LORD
than to put confidence in man
You can download the printable word art to your computer to use in your project if you choose to join in this challenge - there are some fabulous prizes! Click HERE to read the rules.
Here is the card I made:
This paper is from the Take Note collection from Studio Calico.
Thanks for visiting me,
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