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Sunday, February 28, 2010

Simplify Sundays: 2/28 (De-Clutter Your Car)

Debby McCuiston, self-proclaimed "Queen of Clutter-Free", does a segment for us each Sunday on simplifying our lives, getting rid of "clutter", and focusing on what's important.  We're really excited about this new segment - and hope you are too!  Take it away Debby....

In case you are wondering if I got kept my promise from last week (getting rid of my collection of fabric) Yes!!! I did. I gave away 8 kitchen garbage bags full of fabric. It was very hard but I kept telling myself what a blessing that fabric would be to someone else.  When I finished, I felt very happy to be able share something that meant so much to me.
With spring just around the corner I thought we might address the condition of our cars. At times during the next few months many of us will feel like we live in our cars. If you have kids in any sport or band or belong to the many other things that require us to be on the road from sun up until sun down, you probably know that feeling all to well. 
As I was trying to gather my thoughts together for this week's article, I was reminded of one of my daughter's first dates. She was introduced to this young man by a friend. He lived out of town and was coming into town to visit family. While he was in town arrangements were made for my daughter to meet him and go out on a "get to know each other" date. My darling daughter said he seemed nice and was very impressed with the picnic he had prepared himself. The problem started when he opened the door for her to climb up in the truck. Nothing could have prepared her for the avalanche of garbage that landed at her feet after he opened the door. At that point my beautiful daughter realized this relationship was on a slippery slope. Her first impression was that if this young man did not care anymore than to take a few minutes to pick up the garbage in the floor board, he need not plan on a 2nd date. First impressions on something so simple can make or break a relationship.
Would you want the first impression someone has about you be the inside of your car? With all the stress that is involved in driving in today's traffic and getting from here to there, driving around in a garbage can only add to the stress.  We would never let anyone in our home if we had spent the week throwing every food wrapper in the floor. Or if we had thrown our dirty clothes all over the living room and then stacked everything and anything we carried around for the week on top of any surface available.  So why in the world do we ask our friends and family to get in and ride around in all that yuck!? I know by the time we get to our destination and unload children, groceries and anything else that we pick up on our way, the last thing on our mind is the Cheerios that are now laying in the floor board. But by the end of the week with all the forgotten food, wrappers, lost school papers and coupons that have found their way under the seat, in the carpet and ground into the seat covers we find ourselves riding around in our own customized garbage truck. Do we allow this to happen because we are too busy to take care of what we have been blessed with? Or is it a lack of self-respect that we have given up caring about the impression others may get of us? I know first impressions aren't always true or should not always be what we base our relationships on, but what would you think about that  person the first time you where ask to get in and ride in the garbage truck.  Because a young man didn't value the time he would spend with my precious daughter enough to clean out his truck, he missed the opportunity to get to know her better. (She did meet and marry the man of her dreams and he cleans his car out every time he gets gas). I would hate to think I missed out on ministering to someone or developing a new friendship because I couldn't find the time to clean my car. 
I know it seems so shallow to base so much on a clean car but the inside of our car (like the inside of our home) is a reflection of what is going on inside of us. If we are in turmoil, stressing about what we believe God is not doing, then we are a wreck on the inside. Because we allow all that the spill out of us it has to end up somewhere. Look around you and see what have you allowed to spill out of your cup. Is it a mess where every you go inside and outside of your life? Sometimes it takes getting the outside in order to be able to start to work on the inside. Picking up the garbage in our lives is never as easy as sweeping up a few Cheerios, so start with the easy stuff first. By creating a clean and  orderly environment we are able to let theLord teach us how to let go the stuff that weighs us down . Start spring cleaning in the place you spend the most time (your car). You will be pleasantly surprised how much easier your day goes and how the impression you leave with others will be much more positive. Take a few minutes to get your car ready for spring! It's as easy as taking a few of those plastic bags we get at the grocery store and making a plan to keep your car clean and stress free. Now turn up the music and sing like no one is listening and enjoy--Spring is right around to corner!
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  1. This is one thing that I do strive to do every week. A hard lesson of an unopened coke can, a hot summer day and a marathon cleaning session from an exploded coke made this a "must do" on the weekly chores.

  2. I never thought of it this way. That is gross! A garbage truck?! I guess I better start cleaning. Thanks for putting it this way and making me realize how really gross it is to live this way. One garbage car driver that will now change.



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