The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America


Making space

You'll find openness gives you room to grow

When our godsons visited recently, they helped us clean out our storeroom. People with houses have basements, attics and garages—we have this one room. We took out all the boxes and assorted things we’d put in there over the years and deposited them in the center of our loft, which we usually keep empty.

It was amazing how much space that roomful of stuff took up. Soon we were hauling things down to the dumpster on the street, putting aside items for donations and stacking boxes back in the storeroom (but neatly). We breathed a huge sigh of relief when the remaining things were put away. We realized how much we need an empty area in our living space as a physical reminder of openness.

Every year one or two book titles strike us as particularly clever. One of our recent favorites is It’s Hard to Make a Difference When You Can’t Find Your Keys by Marilyn Paul (Penguin Group, 2003). We still smile thinking of all the things we could do if we could get everything organized.

And we know we aren’t the only ones who struggle with stuff. One of the liveliest conversations ever held by our church’s women’s group was on the question “How do you deal with clutter?”

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