I spent all day Saturday cleaning out my closets. I keep out of season items in the closet upstairs (one advantage to having an empty nest). I have six bags of clothes and shoes to donate to charity. I got rid of things that were too little, too worn, or that I was just tired of. It feels good to lighten up and my closet looks great, ready for warmer weather.
It got me to thinking about how God is doing that in my life, cleaning out the closets of my heart.
My heart closed up after the childhood sexual abuse, tightened in an attempt to self-protect, froze in an attempt to numb the pain. In healing me, it feels like God is softening and expanding my heart to love Him and other people more. I'm claiming His promise in Ezekiel 36:26 NIV-"I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove your heart of stone, and give you a heart of flesh".
I've lived my life ambivalently. I've been wishy-washy, tossed to and fro, uncertain of who I am or where I'm going. As I grow closer to God, He makes it clear that His way is the only wise way to go, and He will guide me on the right path, one step at a time. "Some wandered in desert wastelands, finding no way to a city where they could settle. Then they cried to the Lord in their trouble and He delivered them from their distress. He led them by a straight way to a city where they could settle", Psalm 107:4, 6-7. NIV
Depression and negative thinking have been my life-long battle. God has an answer for that, too-more faith in Him. "He brought them out of darkness and the deepest gloom and broke away their chains. Let them give thanks to the Lord for His unfailing love and His wonderful deeds for men, for He breaks down gates of bronze and cuts through bars of iron", Psalm 107:27-28, 30. NIV
I'm thankful that God is faithfully cleaning out the areas of my heart that were damaged by the abuse. It feels good to be lightened. Pretty soon there will be springtime in my heart.