Sunday, March 29, 2015

What's hiding in your closet?

This summer my son is going on a missions trip to Northern Ireland with the youth group from our church.  I am so proud of him!  This trip is a tremendous opportunity to serve others and grow in his relationship with the Lord.  This weekend the team held a tag sale to raise money for the trip.  It was fun to put it together, but a lot of work as well.

In preparing for the tag sale, I went through my closet and pulled out everything that does not fit me anymore.  There's very little left!  Monday morning, I realized I have a closet of clothes that used to fit me about 12 or so years ago.  I gained weight, put them in the basement and kept thinking, "I'll wear these when I lose weight."  Of course, one year turned into 12 and I never even looked at them again.  I pulled out a few of the dresses Monday morning just to see.  I had a good laugh.  The other night I pulled out the rest of the clothes and had a grand time going through them.  I tried on a few of my old favorites, especially the ones I bought when I accomplished my lifetime membership to Weight Watchers in 2003.  Although everything is completely out of style, just about everything fit, except two dresses that are a little too snug.  I had so much fun!

 Do you remember when this style was fashionable?  The pink number reminds me of Little House on the Prairie.  Oh my!

Surprisingly, trying on all the old clothes was a breath of fresh air.  The sad part is, I'll never wear these things, even though they fit.  They should have been donated years ago when they were more fashionable.  A few things were even too big for me.  I wonder why I was hanging onto these things?

The flower pants and the white capris were two of my favorite outfits.  I wore these for exactly one season after I reached my goal weight on Weight Watchers in 2003.  The white ones have lovely teal flowers embroidered on the bottoms.  So chic.

This makes me think about things that are hidden.  Are there treasures in your closet that you are missing out on?  Things buried beneath dust and rubble, waiting to be uncovered?  Maybe it's not literal, like me and my old clothes.  Maybe it's a rusty talent you have not taken out to use in a while.  Perhaps it's an old friendship that needs restoring.

I used to cross-stitch.  This is one of the pieces I did.  What is your hidden talent?

Or maybe there are things you are hiding, trying to avoid.  Kind of like me avoiding my "skinny clothes" because I was ashamed of being fat.  Deny they are there and you're not fat.  Sometimes there are things in our past we cover up, hide from and try to avoid.  We work hard to avoid them and often they sneak up on us in ways we do not expect.  Wounds from childhood.  Unresolved issues from young adulthood.  Sins from the past which haunt us.

God heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.
Psalm 147:3

My challenge for you is to clean out your closets.  Literally and figuratively.  Go through your clothes, take anything you have not worn for a year or more and donate it to charity.  (If you live in my area, donate any tan or black pants, skirts or shorts to a local school.  Kids need them for uniforms.)  It is liberating and a lot of fun!!!

Cleaning out the closet of your heart is a little more complicated, but far more necessary.  If you have a hurt from the past, the first step is to pray.  Seek the Lord for guidance.  Surrender to him.  There is absolutely nothing in your past He does not already know, but He loves you anyway.  He sent His son to redeem you.  Christ paid the price - you do not have to carry the burden.  Next, talk with someone you trust to begin the healing process.  You may need to work through this with a professional and there is nothing wrong with that.  I warn you, it's difficult and painful to look, really look at yourself, to look deep.  But when you do, when you address the monsters in your closet, you can become free.  That freedom is worth the journey!

But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed.
Isaiah 53:5

My Redeemer Lives by Nicole Mullen