Sunday, March 28, 2010

Liberation from dust and chaos

As the weather warms, I've started cleaning out cupboards and closets and finally, today, the pantry. It's not totally done, but four of the six shelves are re-organized and I find myself tempted to just open the door to look at it's orderliness. It is pure liberation from disorder, chaos and a layer of dust that had fallen on some unused items. I can open the door and immediately see the ingredients I need -- rather than pass a minute or two, first trying to remember what I opened the door for since the chaos has confused me and secondly trying to actually find it. Spring cleaning used to be a custom linked around Easter. We clean away the old to get ready for the new. I enjoy reading Sarah in NYC's blog and most recently it has been some of her careful preparations to get ready for Passover. Her reflections are very beautiful. They have prodded me in my own Christian practice. In the Lenten time we have moved from the frailty of Ash Wednesday -- those ashes reminding us that we are dust and to dust we will return. Frail beautiful creatures of God for whom life is short and for whom we are to live in God to the fullest. Yet so often I fall into habits that become life-draining. As I clean, I reflect on the in-balances of life, simple overwork and stressing about that work, that have led to the shelf getting into such a state and that I closed my mind to that chaos again and again. In a short time, a pantry shelf is tidy, made new again.If a pantry can be made livable again so can my life in what God offers to me. This is a busy week of service preparation for me so the spring cleaning may extend into the Season of Easter that begins on Sunday. But this cleaning is one meditative way to prepare for Easter and the results are, at least in this household, celebrative!

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