Emotional Clutter

This morning I packed up my 2006 Sonata, preparing to hit the road back to San Antonio after a long (and needed) Florida vacation. While, yes, I technically moved out of my parents house last year around this time, for the past 12 months I’ve been living off only what fit into my 2 free checked bags back in early 2014.

This time I’m doing it right.



There it is, folks. My entire life, neatly tucked into the trunk of my car. (I actually was able to cram quite a bit more back there after I took this shot. Too bad I don’t have a picture of that for you.)

I was surprised how easily everything fit. After only a few hours of rifling through every old item, every keepsake, every practice sketch and school paper, I was able to trim most of the fat from the stale memories of my childhood existence.

However, unfortunately, there are still a few things packed into these boxes that I don’t want, but I just couldn’t get rid of.


The Junk

2014 was a hard year for me. Don’t get me wrong, it was the best year of my life! I met some of my best friends this year and wouldn’t trade that for the world. But I also experienced more emotional pain than ever before.

Some of it was my fault. And some wasn’t. All of it was unavoidable.

Pain is a fact of life. There’s no getting around it. But pain is also temporary. At least, it should be.


Carrying the Junk

Just this week I was slammed in the face with a painful reminder of that early 2014 injury. Unable to tame my rampaging imagination, I took the chance to re-evaluate my feelings. I was digging up ancient history. Why does it still hurt?

That’s when I realized: for the past 6 months, I’ve been holding a grudge.

Against someone else? Maybe. Against myself? Definitely.

Just like the ugly childhood sketchbooks I still cling to, I’ve left a few hurt feelings tucked away in the Chick-fil-A fry boxes of my heart. I’ve been carrying them around for months, never truly healing. Rather, telling myself that everything is okay and it’s time to think about something else.


Tossing it Out

Everyone makes some kind of junk-removing New Years resolution in January; lose 10 pounds, quit smoking, drink less, etc. But does anyone ever think about cleaning out the inner garbage can?

Think back over this past year. What hurt or grudge are you still holding on to? What unspoken thoughts linger in the back of your mind, whispering discouragement in your moments of weakness? What is your personal security blanket of pain?

The past is dead. It’s time to trim the fat.


P.S. God never asks us to remove junk ourselves. Not only does he not ask… it’s literally impossible.
Matthew 11:28-30  “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

Never go it alone. That will only lead to more pain and disappointment. Instead, take some time to fast and pray. Let the Lord lead you through this process. Trust me, he knows the way.

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