27 Hangars and My Heart — Christ’s Home.
What do those two have in common? Well, part of decluttering my closet has been the 27 hangars challenge is to declutter down to only those basics that bring you joy. When I looked at how many hangars were really in my closet I got to thinking about a favorite little booklet by Robert Munce – My Heart Christ’s Home. (order here)
Munce encourages us to think of our heart like a home and to go room by room (where we live, eat, read, watch, etc.) to either declutter, or, hopefully, to unashamedly open the door to each room to God’s view and control.
Plenty more to remove from those rooms than my closet -especially the heart closet and the junk drawer!
Colossians 3: 12-14 tells what clothing should be left in my spiritual closet after decluttering:
and above all
Which binds everything together
Compassion first because the climate in any discussion changes when we start looking and listening from the others’ viewpoint.
Kindness also provides a safe place – a platform where we can dialogue, converse, disagree and discover. Tweet that.
Humility is the third to encourage considering others’ needs before our own. That includes forgiving when we know we are right or know we have been wronged because life is about more than us – and more than who is right or wrong.
Meekness is knowing your strength and how and when not to use it – again in deference to and protection of the weak and fragile.
Patience – because we will need to do all of the above over and over again to develop those basics to where they come naturally
And above all – love (agape love) which is described in the original language as goodwill ands shown especially in the judgment and the deliberate assent of the will as a matter of principle, duty and propriety
(Webster’s dictionary defines goodwill as: a kindly feeling of approval and support : benevolent interest or concern) is a first choice of action
No wonder it holds the other virtues together.
As you know I am a last things first person, so the first focus for me needs to be that one that holds all the others together – goodwill – that state of voluntarily wishing well for another. Imagine the difference if discussions, business deals, relationships, are entered into with a voluntary first choice of action to support and benefit the other person!
We could all preface life’s many emotional actions (or the usual re-actions) with a statement my husband made during our engagement. He said he always wanted what was best for me and never to hurt me. But he was human, and was bound to disappoint or hurt me in the course of life, and if (or when) that happened, he hoped I would understand and forgive. His first choice to establish our relationship on that basis freed me several years later when he had a very bad day. I knew then I had a choice – to snarl back or to remember my first love. When I gulped and asked him how about if we forget this ever happened, he breathed out a big sigh and thank you and we went on – just as if it never happened.
Do you see what that is a picture of? Justification! (Our sins forgiven and forgotten – just-as-if-it-never-happened) the unchanging basics accenting the love that ties it all together.
That’s what a decluttered closet (or heart) looks like!
How many hangars in your closet?