I have decided to take this first official day of my Spring Break to dedicate to Spring cleaning. Most people would think I’m insane, but cleaning actually relaxes me (maybe that has something to do with needing to control things, but that is another post for another day. :]). Anyway, this has been a good thing because when I get busy, the space in which I inhabit (i.e. bedroom, bathroom, car & office) looks like a tornado has hit it and it would be a ridiculous understatement to say that busy has been a common word in my vocabulary over the last couple of months. So far, I’ve found unread books that I intend to finish before the weeks is out (yeah right!), notes from this past quarter that I can catalogue and a pair of shoes that I have been looking for for at least 2 weeks (insert intense feeling of shame)! I’m not proud of the deep need for spring cleaning that I have, but I’m glad I have at least one day to invest in it before my week gets insanely busy!
During this spring cleaning adventure I decided to take on my jewelry box. I’m not a big jewelry person, but I do have a number of necklaces that I love and will wear, but I’m not always great at putting them away. As a result they tend to get tangled. Really, really tangled. And if you have EVER had to untangle a necklace, particularly one with a very thin chain, you know how awful of a task that can be.
I came upon a necklace that my dad had given me a few years ago for my birthday. It was crazy tangled. The chain was twisted and turned around itself with knots in it all wrapped around the heart pendant. It was so bad that I considered throwing it away for lack of wanting to untangle this chain. That thought was fleeting, and I began to work on the chain. After about 3 minutes, I was ready to give up. It seemed like I was not making any progress and I was sure that the time I was spending on untangling this one necklace could be better spent organizing my desk or folding laundry. But I persevered. By minute 6 I was ready to take scissors to the chain and just buy myself a new chain. By minute 10, I was sufficiently annoyed at myself for having taken on this seeming futile mission to untangle this chain. However, I was starting to make a little progress and I became more determined than ever to get this chain unknotted.
It took me approximately 15 minutes, but I finally got my necklace chain unknotted and put away. And I’m sure you’re wondering, dear reader, why I took the time to recount my battle with a necklace chain. I guess the reason is because the metaphor of the necklace is not lost on me. Having walked through some of the things that I have over the last weeks, months and years, it had become quite evident that what I was doing with that necklace was not unlike what God has been doing in my own life and heart. In my own way, I’ve been trying to help God sort out the plans He has for me, but those good intentions have created more knots and tangles. And then I approach God with impatience and frustrated because things are not working out in my time frame.
But untangling things takes time. Straightening out knots and working out kinks are not things that happen immediately. Like I did with my necklace, God is carefully unlooping, unknotting, and undoing the ball of chaos that my life has become. I fully recognize the accomplishment that came from untangling this necklace is slight when it comes to the freedom that God offers in Christ if I will let Him do the untangling of my life.
It is a good reminder during this Holy Week. The reason Jesus came in the first place was because humanity could never get it together enough to be in right relationship with God. We were too entangled in sin. His sacrifice, His death, and His resurrection was the untangling we needed in order to be free.
Today, I choose to be free.