By Tricia York
1 Corinthian 10:13 “No temptation has seized you, except what is common to man. And God is faithful; He will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, He will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it.”
You would think that a daughter of a supremely organized woman would have inherited the ability to be organized. But, the Lord put me on the earth to be an excellent example of why evolution is not true. I was recently visiting my mom and, during a get- together with some of her friends from church, another woman confided in me that she just could not get organized (as if, since I was related to my mom, that I naturally was). I didn’t have the heart to tell her that I too hide my clutter in my closets. That, clothes sometimes don’t make it to the drawer after laundry day before they are worn again. And, if I put something in a safe place so as not to lose it, it will only be found when my daughter sorts through my belongings when I am too old or cold to care.
When my mother comes to visit me, I feel a mix of apprehension and relief. Apprehension, because my home will never be in the pristine condition that hers has always been. Relief, because she often has pity on me and organizes a cupboard or two when I am not looking. I am sure that my mother attempted to teach me how to organize my house. I know how to clean a house, but it dawned on me that I never learned how to keep a house clean. I have made multiple attempts to turn over a new dust rag in life and tackle my disorganization. I vow to not leave any dishes in the sink after a meal, pick up the bathroom after the baby’s bath, and put all the clothes away before the day is done. These attempts have lasted at best a week or until the next personal crisis comes around, and then the proverbial downward spiral begins. I have read organizational / motivational books, bought day planners, written daily chores on 3×5 cards, and begged ideas from my mother. For some reason I usually end up only millimeters less disorganized than before. I read Proverbs 31 and I am convicted. A woman, who juggles clothes making, cooking, keeping a home, raising children and directing a business, puts a halt to my prayerful whining when I am giving God all my reasons for a disorganized life. I also know that God’s standard is much higher even than my mom’s.
God loves order. It is evident throughout the Bible. Creation and salvation are prime examples. Chaos is never a part of His plan for us as disciples. I am reminded of I Corinthians 14:40 “Let all things be done decently and in order.” So I push up my sleeves, pull out the scrub brushes, open the closet and dodge the boxes falling from the top shelf and start all over again. Praying a prayer of repentance for the umpteenth time, I thank the Lord that He forgives me again and again. I am reminded of the numerous times that Israel strayed from what they knew God would have them to do, yet He continued to forgive them. No, they did not get off scot-free. There was always a consequence to be paid for disobedience. God reminds us in I Corinthians 10:13 that He is faithful to provide a way of escape from our temptation. Unfortunately, that doesn’t mean that we get a years supply of Merry Maid service. But that He will support us so that we can bear what is put before us. I continue to strive for an orderly home. Some weeks are better than others, and I make a little more progress each year. But please, watch your head when you open the closet door.
Prayer: “Lord, thank you for giving us what we need so we can bear what is before us.”