I hate cleaning. It feels so pointless, because everything gets dirty again in about twenty minutes anyway. I sweep the floor, and it needs to be swept again. I wash the dishes, and we use them again and need to wash them again. Someone scatters toys on the floor as soon as I've left the room.
But it needs to be done, because otherwise we'd be living in chaos and filth. So I sweep the floors, unload and reload the dishwasher, wipe off the table and counters, sort and wash and dry and fold the laundry. Because if I don't, we won't be able to find anything, eat anything, wear anything, do anything.
This year, thanks to the family reunion in Williamsburg over Thanksgiving, my house is making me quote the fish in The Cat in the Hat a lot: "This mess is so big and so deep and so tall, we cannot clean it up, there is no way at all." I've barely got any Christmas decorations up yet because first I have to clean the places where they go! In fact, everything is such a disaster that I have been inspired to weed out a lot of our things, to sort them into boxes for giving to the thrift store or selling at our next yard sale. I've started packing away toys and books the kids have outgrown too.
What does this have to do with Advent? Well, Advent is that season in the church year when we Christians anticipate celebrating Christ's birth at Christmas and also look forward to his Second Coming, when the world will end and we'll go to our heavenly home to live with him forever. It's a good time for personal reflection, for looking at our lives and hearts and seeing what changes need to be made. What needs cleaning up? Have we been lax about spending personal time in the Word every day (guilty!) or about praying without ceasing (guilty!). Have we been impatient (guilty!) or unkind (guilty!) or focused on prep work for Christmas instead of the miracle we'll be celebrating (guilty!)? We all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23), but as redeemed, loved children of God, we get to do our very best to live our lives to his glory out of gratitude for his mercy and love toward him and our fellow people.
Tir Asleen hasn't been 100% clean since we moved in here three years ago. I will never be a perfect person. But I can clean my house as best I can, and I can focus on God's love and mercy, on the reason for the season. If I clear some of the clutter out of my home and out of my heart, doing both of those will be a lot easier.
I'm linking up today with the Advent Link-Up Party on Sister, Daughter, Mother, Wife. Click here to find lots of other great posts about Advent!