The girls' room has been a disaster for a long time now. Every attempt we have made to get them to put their toys away, clean their room, make their beds, and put way their clothes has failed. We have bribed; we have rewarded; we have threatened; and yet still, we have failed. Finally (mother and father) decided the girls may choose 20% of what is currently in their room to keep in their room. The rest is getting boxed up. That's right. 80% of their clothes, toys, shoes, games, stuffed animals, dresses, and even underwear were boxed up and placed in the attic. The rule was made that if they could handle a simplified version of their room, slowly they could earn back some of their belongings. [And their room was bare bones of what it was before!] After the screaming and the fits, one of the girls came downstairs and said, "you know daddy, I kind of like my room now".
Pondering this story I can't help but think about how cluttered our lives can become. I can't count the number of times I have felt overwhelmed with my life and looked for ways to be rescued. Can you imagine if we were to box up of 80% of our time, our issues, our concerns, and our "freedoms" how great that 20% could become?? My brother in-law, being faced with great challenges over the past several years, suggested that perhaps trials are the Lord's way of sweeping out the 80% that bogs us down, teaching us what is truly important, and helping us to take care of the simplest 20%...and if we can manage, He just might bless us with the other 80.