This weekend our family accomplished a HUGE goal. It took the biggest weight off my shoulders. It was one of those things that had emotionally, spiritually, and physically weighed me down. It prevented me from being the wife I needed to be, the mom I desire to be and the servant of Christ I wanted to be.
The task: restore order to the basement.
You might wonder why I consider that such a big deal. For starters, it was something we had tried to do many times before and we gave up because it was so overwhelming. Our basement became known as the "underworld". It was a place that sent me over the edge as soon as I opened the door. I don't do well with clutter and I get very irritated when we are guilty of not taking care of our belongings. Belongings are blessings from God and we had not been good stewards. I felt like as a mom I was failing because I couldn't get my children to take pride in what they had.
The basement is the place we are supposed to have school. It hadn't happened that way in a long time and as a result I wasn't being the best teacher I could be and I wasn't taking advantage of the vast array of learning materials we own. I couldn't craft because I couldn't get to my scrapbook materials and I didn't have space to work. The kids didn't have access to their toys. Even as we purged LARGE amounts over the last months, we still had not organized them in a way that they were usable.
With some of the changes taking place in our family over the last months and changes coming, we knew it was time to get the job done and get it done effectively.
Result: a much happier mom! The kids now understand the value of taking care of their things. They have even rediscovered things they didn't know they were missing! :) Peyton has a place just for him to build his creations. Bradlee is enjoying playing with toys he doesn't even remember. Adriana is enjoying having her own space to craft, read, and work on jigsaw puzzles. Family time has a place and is much more relaxed. I am able to THINK now and have found myself in a better place emotionally and spiritually. I have an office area that is my space and it's so much easier to accomplish so many things on my list.
Saturday night after we finally finished the task (nearly 24 hours around the clock of constant work!), I started thinking about the basement in spiritual terms. I woke up again in the middle of the night last night with the same thoughts running through my head.
With the basement so incredibly out of hand, I would NOT let anyone see it that visited. I didn't want them to see our "mess". I didn't even want to deal with it. Things we were too lazy to put up, got put in the basement instead of dealing with it.
Aren't we like that with sin in our lives? We bury it. We try to hide it. We don't deal with it. Push it down the stairs and lock the door. Sweep it under the rug. Hide it underneath something else. Absolutely don't let anyone in to see the real us. Don't let anyone know the truth of the ugliness we are hiding inside.
However, just like when the basement was restored to order, there is such an overwhelming peace that comes when we finally deal with our junk. By letting God in to clean out EVERY last corner, purge the ugliness, and restore us.....we find the peace and love He intends for us to experience.
Even though I did everything to keep the world out of our "underworld" and kept those doors locked, I couldn't hide my reality from God. He sees us in our filth and through our filth. He loves us unconditionally. However, it isn't in his nature to just LEAVE us in the filth. He provided a way for us to be clean again by the blood of his son, Jesus Christ. We no longer have to attempt to hide. The doors to our hearts can be open again, just like the doors to my basement are open and inviting.
Thankful that not only did a MONUMENTAL task finally get dealt with completely and thoroughly, but it was also a time for us to enjoy as a family. Yes, it was tremendous, exhausting work----but we laughed along the way, had some great conversations, and celebrated our victory with a backyard movie on the fence (Soul Surfer!). We are enjoying being together as a family even more and we learned some spiritual truths along the way. The coming weeks will bring a start to our 10th year of homeschooling and we have never been anymore physically, emotionally, or spiritually prepared! Great days ahead!
I also have to give the biggest thanks humanly possible to my dear husband that partnered with me to get this job done. He recognized how much it was affecting my in ALL aspects of being everything I NEED to be and helped finally get it done! I can't thank him enough.