That’s my word of 2014. I had never picked a word before, but I decided I would try something different this year. I spent a lot of time praying and reflecting in December on what my word should be. And in true God fashion, He gave it to me loud and clear.
It all started with a diet. Yep, you read that right. The Fast Metabolism Diet by Haylie Pomroy to be exact. This diet is amazing and I’ll spare you the many pages on which I could gush on and on about how great this new way of thinking and eating has been. Suffice it to say that because of the planning and preparation involved in doing this diet, I realized I had to make some changes in many aspects of my life. It was in the planning that I realized God had given me my word and He was showing me how to apply it to every aspect of my life.
To simplify or get rid of mess, disorder, and complications.
This is the definition that sums up why I chose declutter as my word this year. I realized quickly while studying for the diet, we would be making a lot of changes because we would be eating clean and whole and healthful. No more boxes, cans, or fast food. No more convenience. As a result of this, I realized I would be getting rid of the mess and disorder within my body, which has allowed me to declutter my mind a bit along the way.
I’m finding more focus in my day now that I’ve eliminated things like caffeine, sugar and wheat from my diet. I honestly had no idea what impact those items had on me, until I stopped consuming them. I think the clearer mind has a lot to do with the fact that I actually sleep from the time I lay down until my alarm wakes me in the morning. This is new to me. It’s been years since I’ve slept through the night. I guess you could say that I’ve decluttered my subconscious in a way that it quiets down and allows me to get a full night’s sleep, uninterrupted by dreams and restlessness. I still have a long way to go with the decluttering of the mind, but I’m off to a great start.
The last area of my life that I want to concentrate on is my spiritual life. As much as I love God, I really suck at giving Him a special time in my day. I’m too busy, too sleepy, too lazy – just pick one and that the excuse I use daily to not read the Word. Now, don’t misunderstand, I spend a lot of my day listing to contemporary Christian music, or catching up on sermons during my drive to work. It’s not like I ignore Him completely, but I do not set aside specific time for Him each day.
I think I’ve found the solution and it’s crazy how perfectly this fits into my theme of decluttering. It’s so perfectly crazy that one would think God had it hand delivered by Gabriel himself. I prefer to think God has a Pinterest account and he pinned the following just for me to see only days before Lent.
Of course the 40 Bags in 40 Days immediately caught my attention due to the significance of the number 40 in the bible. Then I started reading the blog post and sure enough, the blogger is intentionally starting this challenge to coincide with Lent. Ann Marie Heasley of White House Black Shutters, is issuing a challenge to “focus on cleaning one area per day…declutter, simplify, decrapify (don’t you LOVE that word), and get rid of things you don’t need. The goal is one bag a day…” She even provides you with a handy printable to list your 40 areas so you can plan your attack on clutter.
Now, you may be asking, what does this challenge have to do with decluttering my spiritual life. Well, here’s what I’m thinking. I’m going to accept the 40 Bags in 40 Days Challenge with a twist. I’m going to specifically set aside time each day to declutter an area, and I’m going to listen to God’s word while I do it. I’m going to start with Mark and see where the Lord takes me. YouVersion is going to become my very best friend. Well, that, and a box Hefty garbage bags.
To organize and prioritize
I guess you could say that’s exactly what the next 40 days will be for me. I’ll be observing Lent by getting rid of some earthly belongings, organizing what’s left, and making time with God a priority in my day.