Debby McCuiston, the “Queen of Clutter-Free”, does a segment for us each Sunday on simplifying our lives, getting rid of “clutter”, and focusing on what’s important. We look forward to her words of wisdom each week & hope you enjoy it too! Take it away Debby….
Since this is the season for college and high school graduations, I have run across several articles with the thoughts and future plans for many of the graduates. Every once in a while I’ll hear a reporter ask the question about the problem with America. This question peaked my interest since I think our country is the best place to live in the entire world…so I made sure to read looking for insight to this age old question.
The same theme of complacency seemed to be the thread that held each of these articles together. The more I read the more I started to understand the thoughts of the young ones that will become the leaders of tomorrow. In our culture when we hear time and time again “whatever” or “who really cares anyway” or “I am tired of caring” it makes me realize how we have become a people who have lost our vision for the future and have given our power away.
We have gotten way off tack by allowing or complacency to undermine our progress. You can see this on the national and local level.
This idea of complacency can take on many forms and rear it’s ugly head in the simplest to the most complex relationships in our life. If you are a parent of kids on summer break, I am sure within the first week of their break, you will hear the lovely words come out of the mouth of those precious kids- “I’m bored”! Could it be that those words have come from our lifestyle that has created children that are entertained from sun up to sundown without much more than a click of the finger? Games of all sorts keep them busy day and night. From games that let us diaper a virtual baby to playing basketball with our cyber-friends and never breaking a sweat. What happened to neighborhood kids playing outside saving the world from evil forces? Never once did you hear about boredom or asking “what can I do” Why? Because chores would always fill in the gaps for them. I believe complacency has roots in this growing problem…others need to keep me busy or happy or entertained.
As grownups how often do we get bored with a project and instead of completing it, we leave it unfinished…wasting time and money. How many unfinished craft items sit on the kitchen table or counter top and litter every other room in our home. I love the challenge of a new project but half way through I start to feel like I have mastered the new skill. The thrill seems to fade quickly and the stack of unfinished projects adds a new one.
How many of us dream of a yard that will be one that has grown out of the pages of Better Homes and Gardens? We set and plan, dream and just as soon as we get started we find out the neighbors just hired the best yard designer in the south, really? Stink fire, we know right away ours will pale in comparison so the wind starts to leave our happy balloon and we figure why should we even bother. Funny thing, our plans were perfect for us, just what we wanted and would serve our family well, but we compared our dreams to someone else’s. We decide to give up and walk away. It doesn’t take long before we quit caring if we even mow and soon we loose that loving feeling about our “someday dreams” for our home. So it’s not long before we stop dreaming and become complacent, accepting whatever happens, happens.
Laundry piles up and we think we will never get caught up. We become overwhelmed and frustrated so we give up trying. What’s the point? Then begins the task of just making it day to day. Having clean clothes becomes a chore, the pile of dirty ones grows and becomes part of the décor. Now every time you go by this room your heart sinks a little lower and the voice that says “why bother” gets a little louder. The monster of complacency grows a little stronger.
How many commercials do we see each day telling us the latest and greatest items we must have to prove to the world that we are somebody? How has our worth become measured by what we own? Do you drive the “right” car, wear the “right” clothes, travel to the “right” places or live in the “right” neighborhood? Why have we allowed someone else to dictate what is or should be important to us? Because it is easier…really? It is easier to let someone else entertain our children, telling us what should be important to us, convincing us that they know best and all we have to do is obey and follow without giving it another thought. Just become compliant and accept whatever happens.
The thing that has really shocked my system is what we have come to believe as fact only because we have heard it so often and never thought about it ourselves. My family favorite “the Lord helps those that help themselves” never appears in the Bible but is quoted as fact more times that John 3:16. How many of us sit in church without our Bibles open accepting blindly everything tha is said? How many times do we read a bestselling book that may present a theory that does not line up with scripture? But we accept it as fact because we bought it at a Christian book store? Have you wondered how some of the wackiest ideas on what the Bible says continue to draw crowds of people? It’s because they follow blindly without checking to see what the scriptures really say?
Don’t we have a responsibility to teach our children to think for themselves? To be wise and realize that once we give up the ability to think we give up control of our future.
We must reevaluate what we believe according to scripture. Does it line up, without compromise, as truth. We are to let the written, inspired word be the thing we measure our value by. Not what others value. We must care about the things that happen to us day to day. These can be the things that hold us back because we allow these to be the overriding theme in our life.
This week take some time to take a look at what you believe and why. Make a creative plan to deal with the boredom that overtakes our children from time to time, but make it a time to be creative and productive.
May God be pleased with the life of value we live every day!!
Love you to Jesus!