Five Minute Friday: “keep”

How does one follow such a month of such important, heavy, deep posts about one of the greatest injustices in our world (human trafficking)? That question has paralyzed me this week. That, and the fact that I haven’t had my usual writing time due to sick children for the better part of the last few weeks. I say this often, but it bears repeating – motherhood is *not* for the faint of heart. You have to be both scheduled and flexible (planning what you think will be best for each day/willing to flex with the needs as they arise each moment); gentle and firm; compassionate and consistent when it comes to limits/boundaries/discipline; taking the long view for your child while knowing in the short-term what you need to make it to the long view (i.e. – a half-hour of TV when you can’t take your 4-year-old twins’ whining anymore; or a night out with your husband even when your children beg you not to leave; or a Saturday morning coffee-date with a good friend who can listen and laugh about the antics and struggles of motherhood with you).

I have missed this (blogging) space this week. And it is good to be here again, joining the Five Minute Friday writing community who does just that – they keep me writing most Fridays! Five minutes of free-writing on a given topic. Certainly worth giving it a try: head over to Kate’s site to link up here.

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photo from homedit.com

photo from homedit.com

I’ve taken the rather ambitious and predictable January task of purging our home of unneeded clutter and things and toys and random-stuff-that-you-haven’t-used-since-you-got-it-as-a-wedding-gift-8-years-ago. Over and over again, I have been evaluating what is worth keeping, and what should be tossed, given away, or stored for the future. My list of what’s worthy to keep includes these qualities:

  • Quiet toys (i.e. – no loud sounds or flashing lights, if I can help it)
  • Staying power – timeless quality to it
  • I like it. You may laugh, but I realized that the first step for me in clearing the clutter is realizing how many things I’ve kept in our house because I felt like I should, or I’ve had it since third grade/etc. Silly, really. So I’m giving myself permission to get rid of what I don’t like in our home. Down with the thousands of mismatched picture frames and only-used-once appliances, and throw pillows I’ve held onto since college.
  • It serves a purpose now.

What if I likewise evaluated my life and my heart like this? If I looked to nurture qualities of my soul worth keeping, and sought God’s expulsive mercy and grace to be rid of what’s not? How would that change the way I spend my time? How I talk to my children and my husband? The way I engage in my church and my neighborhood? What would and would not be on my schedule?

Questions worth pondering. I would love to hear your answers as you have them.

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4 thoughts on “Five Minute Friday: “keep”

  1. No way! That’s what I’ve been doing! Purging, giving away, recycling loads of old paper . . I have a table of stuff “free sale.” Friends who come over can take what they want and can’t offer money. Some of it I’d rather not drop off at the thrift store if a friend can use it (a pack of pull-ups the kids outgrew, books, craft supplies. . .) And I have things from third grade that I’m definitely keeping. Nothing wrong with that.

    • Love it, Heidi! Of course we are on the same wavelength – totally how God’s been working lately. You do have a better reason than I do to purge right now though. 😉

  2. “What if I likewise evaluated my life and my heart like this? If I looked to nurture qualities of my soul worth keeping, and sought God’s expulsive mercy and grace to be rid of what’s not? How would that change the way I spend my time?” – i love this. you’ve challenged me to go DEEPER in my new-year-purge… to focus more intentionally on what our Papa wants to do in my soul itself as i await more developments in a season of extended transition. thank you, thank you! ~hugs.

    • Thank you, Angela, for stopping by again and leaving your encouragement. Soul purging is way harder than home purging. But I like to think that home purging sometimes is a way to get started with the deeper work …

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