on spring cleaning...
Does anyone still do Spring Cleaning anymore? I mean real, deep-down, wash the walls-hand-scrub-the-floors-launder-the-curtains-wash-the-windows-organize-the-closets, Spring Cleaning?
I am guessing not. Who has the time? Who has the energy? Who really wants to get into all that? Did you know most cleaning services will do only what Spring Cleaners call basic cleaning? No windows, no hand cleaned floors, and certainly no closet purges--nobody likes to do it, even if they are getting paid for it.
But think back to a day when Mom or Grandma (in my case, anyway) might have made you help with Spring Cleaning. Remember? I do. There was something to finding out how dirty your surroundings really had been, without your realizing it. There was something to the sense of accomplishment when a stroke of the sponge or rag revealed a clean surface. There was something, after a long day of water and cleansers, and “no, that’s not enough; do it again” in that feeling of having gotten something well and truly done. Can I get an Amen?
Whether or not we do Spring Cleaning in our homes, it is true that the same principles apply to our spiritual lives. We may have gotten untidy about our spiritual disciplines of prayer and scripture-reading. We may have stopped picking up after ourselves (figuratively or literally!) at some point, leaving the refuse of poor choices and poor habits littering our psychic and emotional space. We may have simply stopped participating in our own spiritual house, thinking that someone, by some chance, would just come along and do it for us (this does not work in households, why should it work in our souls? I’m just sayin.’)
Take advantage of the energy of Spring, and the anticipation of Easter’s hope and promise, and do a little Spring Cleaning in your soul. Toss out some old habits, or old junk that you’re hanging on to. Dust around the corners and find out what you forgot was there. Rediscover nooks and crannies you forgot were part of you. Open the windows and let the fresh air of God’s spirit blow through you and bring some new life and new energy. Make new habits to keep the place up. It’s a wonderful opportunity and challenge—take it!
Michelle Bogue-Trost is a devoted follower of Jesus, a pastor, preacher, leader, teacher, and mentor, committed to the health of individuals and congregations.