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May 27, 2024

What a Mess! Restoring Order to Your Inner Life

"What is impossible with man is possible with God."
—Jesus in Luke 18:27

My friend Christi has been doing some extreme cleaning lately. Both of her parents have passed away, and she's been charged with clearing out the massive clutter from the home they lived in for decades.

The challenge is that they were hoarders; her parents simply could not throw away anything. Surrounded by ceiling-high piles of papers and products saved over the past 40 years, Christi feels overwhelmed.

What a mess!

Interestingly, like disarray in a house, our inner lives can also get disorganized.

You may be feeling frazzled from a full schedule or family drama. Maybe a friend bailed on you unexpectedly. You're hurt and angry.

But, if you don't know how to deal with emotional pain, it can soon lead to a jumbled "heart mess."

How do you clean that up?

Like taking out the garbage, your heart needs to be cleansed, healed, and filled too. And you can do that every day—at any moment—-when you come to God in prayer. God is more than able, and certainly willing, to restore order to the messiness in your life. Whether things are in total chaos or just need a bit of cleaning up, He can help you to bring order to your heart, your thoughts, your emotions—and yes, even your home.

I have learned that when my heart is not littered with a load of emotional debris, and when I've allowed the Lord to clear out the cobwebs of lingering anger or bitterness, I feel better. I have much more contentment and joy.

I am at peace.

Ordering Your Inner Life
You can clear the clutter and change your life as you talk with God in prayer at any time. He is always there. Prayer is vital to making significant changes. As you talk with God, ask Him to cleanse, heal, and restore every area of your life.

We get hurt, or we hurt others, so our hearts need to be cleansed of pain or wrongdoing. Ask God, What do I need to release? Maybe you need to let go of resentment, offense, or a judgmental attitude.

Whatever it is, ask God for forgiveness and cleansing in your own life. When we are repentant, God forgives us, and it feels like clear, pure water washing away the mud. We feel cleansed.

Ask God to reveal to you what needs to be healed in your heart. You may already know, but you may not. Ask Him, Lord, will you reveal to me what needs to be healed, and bring Your healing to me?

Restoration may come suddenly, or over time; God works differently with each of us. But one touch from God, our Healer, can change everything.

As you are cleansed and healed, ask God to fill you. Ask God, What do I need to add to my life? You've taken off (or released) things that have hindered you; now put on new things and "…clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience" (Colossians 3:12).

Know that you don't have to make things happen in your own effort or clean up the messes in your heart or life. It's God's power working in us that brings renewal. He heals, He forgives. He restores and renews us. Psalm 103:1-5 reminds us of the goodness of God, and all He has done:

"…Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits: Who forgives all your iniquities, who heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from destruction, who crowns you with lovingkindness and tender mercies, who satisfies your mouth with good things, so that your youth is renewed like the eagle's."

Be OK with the process
Restoring order doesn't happen overnight. Most often, healing takes time. But know that things will get better. Have faith in God's ways and timing. Trust His process.

As you pray and take action, you will find more peace and freedom. You'll feel lighter, as if a weight has been lifted from you.

Plus, choosing to get rid of clutter in your heart will make room for new things and healthier ways of living.

And when you do, you never know what surprises the Lord may have in store for you.

Jackie M. Johnson is an author and blogger who writes inspiring content on growing a better life, the power of prayer, and encouragement for singles. Jackie has a heart to encourage single adults of all ages, and she has led numerous small groups and Bible studies for singles. Her books include the breakup recovery guide, When Love Ends and the Ice Cream Carton Is Empty, Power Prayers for Women, and Praying with Power When Life Gets Tough. Connect with Jackie at JackieJohnsonCreative.com.