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Spring Cleaning

I live in the South where spring comes early. We are all tricked into shedding our sweatshirts for the shorts of summer, planting those fragile spring plants, and washing our cars, only to be surprised when the pollen shows up. Then winter comes back for a time and makes us pull out the turtlenecks before the real spring arrives. Spring is a time for renewal. God reminds us that He brings dead things to life, gives us new mercies every morning, makes the old new. It is also a time for sitting outside on the screen porch (once the danger of the dreaded pollen is over). Maybe this is a Southern thing too, but did your grandmother ever say “Don’t let the screen porch door hit you on your way out,”? I remember hearing that as a child and thinking it was funny, but not really understanding the meaning.

While we are spring cleaning and dusting off the porch furniture from the yellow dust that seems to sneak into every crack and crevice, perhaps we need to clean out some other things in our lives, to let them head out the door. I love the image of Passover - and the time to clean out all the “yeast” that has accumulated. Just as the Israelites swept their homes and removed any trace of leavening when they headed into spring and Passover, we too need to do a little cleaning. Are there any bad habits that have crept up on you over the winter? As you pray, ask God to reveal where you have chosen what is okay over what is better or best. He is faithful to reveal when we ask, and to forgive when we repent and turn toward Him.

Are there any relationships which have become burdensome or unhealthy? Just as we clean our pantries of expired food items, perhaps we need to give ourselves a check on our relationships. Is there a friend you may be drawn to because the gossip is juicy or she commiserates with you on the negative qualities of a mutual friend or even your

spouse? As you consider what to clean out of your life, ask God to show you any unhealthy friendships and the crumbs that might be hiding in the corner.

Remember there is a time for everything, “a time to search and a time to give up, a time to keep and a time to throw away,” Ecclesiastes‬ ‭3‬:‭6‬ ‭NIV‬‬. Some friendships run their course, some we pick back up again in another season. When you pray, ask God to show you how to say “yes” to the relationships which are building and growing you or are giving you a chance to nurture or be His hands and feet to another. Request His wisdom on how to choose and how to be kind and thoughtful as you do your spring cleaning. When your spring cleaning is done, grab a glass of iced tea and head to the screen porch to enjoy the beauty of the season. ‭‭Lamentations‬ ‭3‬:‭22‬-‭23‬ ‭ESV: “The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.”

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