I discovered two truths about myself this week while dealing with my space. One is that I long for a perfect location for Bible reading. I have this image of the perfect devotional moment. I’m in a fluffy chair where I can sink into the cushions. It’s sunny, early morning, warm, and I’m sipping a hot drink, my Bible in my lap. In this perfect world, I’m in a corner that’s all windows, like a solarium. Green is all around me, the outdoors visible from indoors. It’s a place of quiet, peace, and calm where I talk to God. If I can find this perfect spot, growing close to God will be easier. Our communication will flow without difficulty because the surroundings get me halfway to God on their own.
The reality? It’s winter. There is nothing green anywhere. I don’t have windows like that. That fluffy chair isn’t in the budget, and I don’t have room for it. I don’t even like hot drinks, so don’t ask me what that’s doing in the perfect dream. If I read my Bible early in the morning, I freeze and the dogs run all over me, excited someone is awake. During the rest of the day, people interrupt. Don’t get me wrong–I do my Bible reading and praying rather faithfully of late. But that vision, that dream of perfection, calm and serene…that’s a dream. I have to step back to reality and know that I’m not going to organize my house enough to make crazy dreams of a perfect life happen.
My other realization is that what I really want, in the depths of my heart, can’t be found by clearing out my stuff. What I want is to move. I’ve wanted to live in the country since I was eight years old. (I wanted to be a dairy farmer when I was eight. I kid you not. Now I just want the land and not the work of dairy farming!). No neighbors. I want to look out my windows and watch seasons and animals and birds. My bid to improve my home is my way of coping with second best. Trying to be content. Finding a silver lining. But my heart–I don’t know if it will ever give up on that dream. Surely my heavenly home will be beautiful. Windows. God’s creation all around. Sounds of life, smells of life, beauty. Beauty around every corner. It’s coming. It’s later, not now.
A quest for the perfect space. A dream I try to quench with everything I can think of. The desire is to be content, to realize this life will never quite fulfill. God will do that. Fulfillment is internal. The external will never measure up. Still, I will do what I can to bring beauty and refreshment to this place, because I am hardwired to long for beauty, to create and work toward it. My space can be a tool to help me on my internal spiritual journey, but it will never take its place. It can’t fix my life or my soul, nor can it replace the reality of a life with the Spirit, a life with God. So far, I hope I’m keeping my perspective and guarding my heart from idols, for even simplicity can become an idol. But I must be diligent, because I already see how easy it is to lose my way on this path.