Spring Cleaning

image.jpeg“To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:” Ecclesiastes 3:1 (KJV)

My favorite season of the year is spring! Besides the consistent battle with allergies from the pollen, plants, trees, and creatures, spring is one of the best times to be outdoors! The temperature is perfect, the sunshine balances out the rain, and best of all there are tons of flowers. I love the flowers, especially Daffodils! In my opinion, spring is like a breath of fresh air and there is a newness of life in the atmosphere.

Think about it, spring is the time to reap the harvests that have been sewn away since the late fall and to prepare ourselves for the droughts of summer. Spring isn’t just a time for taking a break and going to the beach, but in fact the season is commonly associated with cleaning! In order for us to truly participate in spring cleaning we must understand that it is not simply the time to dust the drapes and sort through old clothing, but it is also a time to clean up our lives.

But I’ll get to the point because I’m long winded and surely not here to give you a lesson on what we are already familiar with about the season of spring! (LOL) My intent is to actually esteem you to not only clean up your cupboard and closet, but also to consider cleaning up a few other things… beginning with some of the nouns in your life like people, places, things, etc.!

Let’s consider a few:

1. People: Who are you surrounded by? People who will help you maximize yourself or people who are simply clinging to you for your goods? (Both tangible and intangible) Are these people occupying your mind, time, energy, and in some cases your body? Let’s be honest, many of us allow our homies, lovers, friends, and in some cases family members to occupy all of these corners in our lives.. that ultimately become filled with cobwebs. Maybe you don’t need as many leaches and spiders, oops I meant to say friends… my mistake! (LOL) But seriously, ever considered removing some of those people from your life. Who are you calling your best friend? Someone who should really be just an associate? Do you think you have more value because you have 2K+ followers? Well, that definitely doesn’t make you any more popular if you can’t call on two in your time of need. Been there, done that, writing a book about it! (JK) But the truth is many of us have people in our life that we need to let go of, cut ties with, and free ourselves from. Cutting off people for me was one of the hardest things I struggled with because I LOVE people! Sadly, the reality of it is that not everyone you know or love has your best interest at heart. Not everyone is meant to weather every season with you. “To every thing there is a season…” Just because your wool coat and mittens were warm in the winter, doesn’t mean they mean you any good in the spring. You may break out in a sweat with all that winter gear on in 70+ degree weather! Catch my drift? What are the people in your life looking like? Maybe you’ve got some cobwebs and spiders creeping? Here is some bug spray, SPRING CLEAN IT UP!

2. Places: I remember a time when I had to stop going to church and trust me when I say it wasn’t because I didn’t have a desire to go! I loved that church and still do! But I couldn’t attend for a while because I would instantly become upset when I saw this one person I didn’t quite see eye to eye with. Long story short, I would always see this young lady that I had previously cursed out (I’ve since been delivered! – LOL) But any who, at church I would be so distracted because of her! As a result, instead of praising the name of my Lord and Savior, I’d be cursing her out all over again in my mind and thinking of ways to trip her as they walked passed me… Don’t laugh, I am serious! -__- Let’s just say that God has brought me a mighty long way! AMEN! But the point of the matter is that I had to remove myself from the environment and pray those feelings up off of me! Eventually, I came to my senses and I was able to forgive her and myself and let it go. My behavior didn’t change until I removed myself from the environment. Sometimes you’ve got to avoid certain places in order to get a clear and pure mind. Maybe you can’t get saved because you’re always in the club? Or maybe you are too distracted to do your homework when you are at bae’s house. Girl, you need some new places! Believe it or not, the places we go influence our behavior. Are you tracking mud in your house because of the places you’ve been? Here’s a broom and a mop, SPRING CLEAN IT UP!

3. Habits: Do you procrastinate? “Tomorrow Sounds like a better idea, I don’t feel like it today!” (See Blog Post – Time Waits) Are you always late? (Another blog for another day! – LOL) Do you find yourself always saying what you are going to change, but never change it? “Maybe I will stop smoking today?” Or do you have things that you want to start or accomplish? “Maybe I will start my workouts on the first of the month!” In order to overcome your old habits or to form new ones, you must make a conscious decision to JUST DO IT – like Nike! Aristotle said it best, “We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, therefore is not an act, but a habit.” Don’t limit your potential because you aren’t changing your habits and behaviors. Do you have some old habits and clothes you need to give away so you can make room in your closet for some new ones. Here is a clothes basket, SPRING CLEAN IT UP!

4. Thoughts/Feelings: OOOH THIS IS A BIG ONE! Are you always doubtful or in your feelings? Questioning your future? Afraid that you won’t or can’t be successful? (See Blog Post – You, Alone, Are Enough) It is definitely time you clean up your thought process! It’s time you make a conscious decision to think positively and to surround yourself with only good energy! You need some positive influencers and motivators. For me, I love watching inspirational videos on YouTube when I am down or discouraged. And here as of late, I’ve taught myself to read my bible more and that alone is motivation! (There is nothing like knowing the Lord for yourself!) Maybe it is time to dust off those feelings of fear and defeat and to step into the things that God has already promised you! I too have struggled with feeling inferior and battled with poisonous emotions and I’ll be the first to tell you that it was a highway to self-destruction. One of my favorite quotes by Mary Engelbreit states, “If you don’t like something, change it; if you can’t change it, change the way you think about it.” Are you in the fifth grade, but still thinking kindergarten thoughts? Maybe it’s time you dust off the ceiling of your brain and change your thoughts! Here is a feather duster, SPRING CLEAN IT UP!

IT IS THE SEASON FOR SPRING CLEANING! Disclaimer: I am not telling you to go around cutting everyone and everything off at once, “cold turkey”! Nor am I encouraging you to start acting brand new just because its spring! (GET YOUR LIFE!) As written in the bible, “…a time to every purpose under the heaven:” Meaning the purpose will one day be fulfilled, task will one day be completed, the journey will eventually come to an end and a new one will begin. Some people can’t go where God intends to take you! You may need to avoid some places so you can grow and heal! You may need to drop some old habits and form some new ones! Or maybe you just need to free your mind so your life will follow! For me, the reality was that God couldn’t take me to where I was trying to go because I was busy holding on to those nouns.

Imagine that both of your hands are full with the nouns in your life. Then along comes God to bless you with something better, but you miss out on the blessing because your hands are full. You’ve got to empty your hands by getting rid of some of those nouns. Then you will have room to receive what He has for you!

Whether its people, places, things, habits, thoughts, feelings, or any other noun, it is time to do some spring cleaning. I’ve handed you a featheredn duster, a mop, a clothes basket, and some bug spray… there is no reason to enter into this new season with last season’s clutter! SPRING CLEAN IT UP!

By: Verinique D. Bailey, “The V. In Virtue”

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