Northern Division: Serving every county in Minnesota and North Dakota
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What if God began tidying?

Added on Wednesday, January 23, 2019

Written by Ashley Grossman, Online Communications Manager at The Salvation Army Northern Division

“New Year, new you.” That’s what many of the advertisements on TV and our loved ones are telling us. Indeed, the beginning of a new year is the perfect time to wipe the slate clean and begin anew. Like so many others, I’ve bought into the organizing craze and have started combing through my house, piece by piece. Yes, Marie Kondo’s advice on tidying up has definitely brought a renewed sense of energy into my home. But the process is not without its struggles.

One of the key tenets of Marie’s method is to physically touch every item in your home and determine whether or not it sparks joy in your life. Admittedly, some things were easier to let go of than others: clothes I haven’t worn in ages or that didn’t quite fit right, doubles of the same kitchen utensils, outdated papers, and more. But on the flipside, there were things that I simply could not get rid of, despite the fact that they continue to add to the clutter of my home.

For better or worse, I had placed a great deal of sentiment on a few items, even though I am fully aware that they do not serve any purpose within my space. Simply put, I cannot live without them. And that got me thinking: If God were in my shoes and started his own tidying up, what couldn’t he live without?

While there’s plenty of examples throughout the Bible, I wanted point to the infamous story of Jonah and the whale. Yes, you know the story.

When God spoke to Jonah, He commanded him to go to the city of Nineveh to preach repentance. But Jonah refused to heed the command of the Lord. He fled to a nearby city port and set out on a ship in the opposite direction of Nineveh. While at sea, God sent a violent storm that threatened to capsize the ship. Having heard of what Jonah did to anger the Lord, the crew threw him overboard and the raging waters settled soon after.

And did God allow Jonah to drown? No, He did not. Instead, God sent a whale to swallow Jonah. Jonah repented and begged for God’s forgiveness. The Lord heard his prayer and Jonah was deposited safely ashore. Jonah then went on to spread God’s message to the Ninevites.

Time and time again, we see proof of the Lord’s love for His children despite their times of weakness. God returned to Jonah in his time of need just as He did for Peter, The Apostle Paul, King David, Moses, and many others.

God returned to His people because we are His treasures. He can’t give us up. When we fall and make mistakes, He gives each of us a second chance to make amends. He is compassionate.

But because of his great love for us, God who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions – it is by grace you have been saved. – Ephesians 2:4-5 NIV

When we stray from him, he yearns for us to return. He is faithful.

He will never leave us nor forsake us. – Hebrews 13:5 NIV

And he wants your happiness in his kingdom.

The Lord your God is with you, the Mighty Warrior who saves. He will take great delight in you; in his love he will no longer rebuke you, but will rejoice over you with singing. – Zephaniah 3:17 NIV

As you’re going through your home and tidying up, take a few minutes to remember that you are God’s treasure. No matter what, He will not forsake you.

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