We just transferred to a new home and with packing up for the move we're also doing a lot of throwing out and cleaning up. Moving house is a good time to decide on what we really want to keep and what we can let go of.
I'm reminded of the ancient Jewish custom of thoroughly cleaning their homes in preparation for the spring-time holiday of Passover. According to Wikipedia, "In remembrance of the Jews' hasty flight from Egypt following their captivity there, during the eight-day holiday there is a strict prohibition against eating anything which may have been leavened. Jews are not only supposed to refrain from leavened foodstuffs (known in Hebrew as חמץ chametz), they are expressly commanded to rid their homes of even small remnants of chametz for the length of the holiday (Exodus 12:15). Therefore, for the past 3,500 years, observant Jews have conducted a thorough "spring cleaning" of the house, followed by a traditional hunt for chametz crumbs by candlelight (called bedikat chametz [Hebrew: בדיקת חמץ]) on the evening before the holiday begins."
Even if we're not Jews, or even if we're not moving house, it's a good idea to have regular spring cleaning, a time of heavy duty cleaning and organizing. Perhaps we will find that there are things we have that we don't really use and which would benefit someone else much more. Or that having less clutter will give us a more peaceful and well functioning home.
The weeks before Easter are also a good time to do some spiritual spring cleaning, to take a look at our lives and allow God to take away the clutter, to leave behind what is of value in the eternal perspective.
This Holy week, why not take hold of a Bible and take to heart these words...
"Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me." Psalm 51:10
"Let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water." Hebrews 10:22
"Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will." Romans 12:2
Have a blessed Holy Week!
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