I’m pretending I’m moving to a new house. You should try it.

Actually, a move is in the future but it could be a few years down the road which is why I used the word “pretending”.

When my husband and I started to think about it, we realized that after raising a family and living in the same home for thirty years, a good-sized home I might add, one starts to accumulate a few things. This is a four-story home, meaning the attic has regular height ceilings.      Then there is the basement, which although not as large as it would be if it were a rancher, it is still large enough to accumulate “stuff”.

Now, this is not an exaggeration, but I have been “clearing out almost every day for about a month, but if I look around the house, I can’t tell I’ve got rid of anything.

And, no, my house was never cluttered or messy. That’s the problem. All the “stuff” was neatly stored away because I like organizing. But one can love the art of organizing more than one loves getting rid of excess clutter. Don’t confuse organizing with clearing out the clutter. You can hide it but that’s all you’re doing.

These towels were originally neatly stacked in these cloth containers. The mess you see here is because I gathered up all the dish towels and threw them in these containers so I could sort them. That’s when I thought of taking a picture.



Here’s what I found at the bottom. Don’t ask me if I ate it.


I have loved this house with a passion. It’s a farmhouse. I mean I was “farmhouse” long before it was cool. It’s been fun to decorate it and I will truly hate to leave it. But as big as the house is, the lot is even bigger. We live right in the middle of a number of homes but because this was the original house on the farm, which was then a working fruit orchard, the owners kept a larger piece of the pie for themselves when they subdivided the property. The foundation of the old silo sits in our neighbor’s yard.

Eat your heart out, Joanna Gaines.

And to top it all off, the road our house sits on goes down a hill so that means my driveway, which as at the bottom of the hill, goes uphill. Did you follow that? Right now you can’t even see my house from the road and I love it. I love my privacy.

This whole pretending-I’m-moving-soon has reminded me of the story in Luke 11:24-26. 24

When an unclean spirit comes out of a man, it passes through arid places seeking rest and does not find it. Then it says, ‘I will return to the house I left.’ 25 On its return,it finds the house swept clean and put in order.26Then it goes and brings seven other spirits more evil than itself, and they go in and dwell there. And the final plight of that man is worse than the first.”…

There should be a plan for eliminating clutter,  for reducing the real estate of “stuff”.  If there isn’t, we will just continue to bring in more “stuff”. and pretty soon, just like in the parable above, we will be worse off than we were before. I’ve seen people reduce the clutter, only to accumulate more than what they had before.

When we get rid of our stuff there needs to be good reasons to do so. And if one of those reasons is simply because we need to “clean house and declutter”, that’s reason enough. But then we need to resolve not to bring anything back into our homes unless we have a place and purpose for it. Or maybe just because we love it. To keep it all in balance, we need to get rid of something for every piece we bring back in our home.

But what about when we clear out the mental clutter?  It’s the same philosophy as above. We need to plan to fill those spaces, with something else otherwise we will go right back to the same ole’ thing. When we get rid of certain ways of thinking, for example, we now have “vacant brain” real estate. What are we going to do with it?

Maybe by giving up a habit, we’ll make more time to read. Maybe we can pursue a new hobby. Maybe we can make more room for those things we always said we wanted to do but haven’t because we’ve been so moving organizing, cleaning, and storing our “stuff”.

I can share a real-life example with you. I love to savor my coffee and watch the news for a couple of hours in the morning. But I found that was really cutting into my time. So now, I still have that first couple of cups of coffee, watch a little news and then my husband get our daily forty minute walk in. When I get home, I have plenty of time for my morning devotions.

But if I’d changed my morning routine without a plan for what to do with the extra time, I’ll bet I would’ve filled it with worthless activity.

Believe it or not, cleaning out the clutter, involves a lot of thinking.

God bless and I hope you have a good day.


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