For the past week or so I’ve been doing some winter cleaning in my bedroom, going through my closet and dresser, organizing it all. I didn’t realize how messy it was until now, I’m normally a very overly organized person, but somehow i let my room become so crammed with useless junk. I have so many special things I’ve saved…cards, letters, movie ticket stubs, and the like. But with all that saving of special things, i have unconsciously stored up a lot of, well, crap. And that crap that i accumulated had started to make my room, and my mind, cluttered. I couldn’t fully experience the joy of lounging in my room, or sleeping peacefully, when there was all this junk around me and getting in my way. And i think that’s how it is with life, we have so much junk that we keep in our lives and hearts, and it gets in the way of our relationship with God.
Last Saturday night i was laying in bed and couldn’t sleep, i had a lot of things running through my mind. God confronted me with some things that i was still holding on too, things that i thought i needed, but really i know deep down that i don’t need. Deep down i know that those things I’m holding on to are really holding me back from being close to God, they are preventing me from moving on into the life and blessings He has for me. The things in my life that i am clinging to just prove that i am not fully leaning on and trusting in God to be my rescue, to be my all and all, and my everything. It’s like I’ve been saying “God i trust you, i am going to run to only you when i am hurting…but i am also going to keep some things with me just in case i need them”. I realized that my actions of holding on were really just telling God flat out “I don’t trust that you will come through, i don’t trust that you are enough. You might fail me”. And that my friends, is a complete lie. God will not fail me, God will not fail any of us. Our Lord is strong and mighty, and He can and will handle whatever we go to Him with. God can handle all the filth and crap in our lives, and he will be our rescuer, and our place of rest. In Matthew 11:28 Jesus says “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.” And one of the names for God, El-Shaddai, means “The God Who is Sufficient for the Needs of His People”. Another name for God, Jehovah-Jireh, means “The Lord our Provider”. So why then do we hold on to other things, when God is sufficient and will provide for us,and carry our burdens?
God wants to be number one in your life, He requires it. He has to come first and take priority in your life. What good is it to tell someone you love only them, but then put other things before them by going to something else for what you need? That’s not love. You can’t love God half heartedly, and that’s what we are doing when we hold to the things we know are wrong and go against God’s Word.
God challenged me to give up the things i hold to, and it terrified me. I started to cry and found my self saying “God i can’t give this up, i need it. I can’t do it, it’s too much, it’s too hard”. But just as i finished my sentence a question exploded in my mind, “What do you love more? Who do you love more?”. Instantly i said “You, God i love you more. I love you so much more”. And i knew right then, it was as plain as day, what i have to do…i have to let go. I have to loosen my grip, let go, and lay it all down at the feet of my God. If i want a true, pure, and deep relationship with the God of the universe, then i have to leave everything else behind and run full speed into my future with Him.
God has so much for you, He longs to have a real relationship with you. God wants to take you places in life, He has a calling for you that is so rich and more fulfilling than anything this world will ever offer. But we can sometimes hinder the things God is trying to do in our lives by not being obedient and not following His word. We self sabotage, and we ruin everything God puts in our life because we can’t let go, and we can’t trust. We want to do things our own way, because it’s easier…only it’s not, is it? It’s a huge burden that’s weighing you down so low you can’t see. You have to hide. But God doesn’t want you to hide, He didn’t send His only son to die on a cross so you can stay in the same broken and ever searching life. No, Jesus died and rose again so we can live, so we can have life more abundantly. But to do that we must die to self, and that means getting rid of all the crap in our life, so we can truly live as a new creation in God, and live out the calling He has for our lives. I once heard someone say that, when your life is crazy, you are going to have to do something crazy to change it. And maybe that crazy thing you need to do is get rid of the junk that you are holding to, the junk that maybe represents your old life. If you have to literally throw things in the garbage, or smash them with a hammer, then that’s what you have to do.
So what is holding you back, friend? Think about it. Go through your life. What baggage are you holding on to? And then ask yourself this question, what do you love more? Or rather, WHO do you love more? If the answer is God, then you have some trash to get rid of. Because anything, any vice,any wrong attitude, or any action, that you are holding on to with a death grip because you think you can’t live without it, is keeping you from God because you are putting that thing above Him. If it hurts and scares you to even think about giving up what you know is wrong, then you are there for making it the god of your life. Let it go and walk away free.
Here are some songs that might help you get the courage to let go, call it a “Cleaning Soundtrack”, if you will. If you want to get a fuller effect, i suggest listening to the songs in the order they are listed, but of course each of these songs are effective in any order, and on their own.
Daisy by Switchfoot
Vices Like Vipers by Oh,Sleeper
Death Of Me by Red
Strong Enough by Stacie Orrico
Lay It Down by Nichole Nordeman
Casting Off by This Beautiful Republic
Let Go by Red
Surrender Saved My Life by This Beautiful Republic
No More Chains by Nichole Nordeman
Everything by Lifehouse
Born Again by Third Day