Are you a pack rat? Do you love to keep things just because they have some meaning or memory attached to them but don’t give any tangible benefits?
I’ve been organizing and sorting out our playroom, it’s like a drug for me, I can’t get enough of it! I honestly like it when clutter builds up so that I can spend time sorting it out! One of my daughters is deeply attached to everything she owns. Everything from McDonald’s Happy Meal toys to crafty paper projects that she’s put her heart into. So, needless to say, when I’m in the “ZONE” she’s not a happy girl. I have to be pretty sneaky and sometimes down right tough when it comes to her and her little treasures. While it bring me no delight to see my daughter sad, it is my joy to help her not be bound to things of this world: stuff. It’s just stuff.
My motto is: People are more important than stuff.
She can accept this answer somewhat because she does love people—VERY much. All this stuff is making it so the people living here are feeling crowded! Still, she gets fixated on something and her day is ruined because of the one tiny little thing (a my little pony comb)that has become the focus of all her attention and she’s forgotten about everything else she still has.
Isn’t that just like us? The Lord has blessed us with so much, more than we need, and yet we get fixated on the ONE thing that we don’t have or are about to lose so we sit in a puddle of despair.
Hebrews 12 says:
“1 Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, 2 fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. 3 Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.4 In your struggle against sin, you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding your blood. 5 And have you completely forgotten this word of encouragement that addresses you as a father addresses his son? It says,
“My son, do not make light of the Lord’s discipline,
and do not lose heart when he rebukes you,
6 because the Lord disciplines the one he loves,
and he chastens everyone he accepts as his son.”
7 Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as his children. For what children are not disciplined by their father? 8 If you are not disciplined—and everyone undergoes discipline—then you are not legitimate, not true sons and daughters at all. 9 Moreover, we have all had human fathers who disciplined us and we respected them for it. How much more should we submit to the Father of spirits and live! 10 They disciplined us for a little while as they thought best; but God disciplines us for our good, in order that we may share in his holiness. 11 No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it.”
It’s painful to be disciplined, it’s painful to let go of things and people we love, it’s hard to resist sin in whatever form, but we can rejoice knowing that when God is working these things out of us, just like we work them out of our children, he’s doing it because he loves us. What an amazing gift!
So if you are going through a hard time and you feel like the Lord is taking away from you the things you love, remember this verse, remember that discipline is one of the elements of love, then you can be like our Tots, who after they’ve been disciplined run into our arms because it’s the safest and most wonderful place to be, and you too can run into the arms of the Father.