Why You Need to Declutter Your Life

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Ryan S. Howard

Today, I would argue that distraction is the No. 1 factor causing many of us to ignore what God is saying. I chose the word “ignore” for a specific reason: God is certainly speaking, but are we listening? Are we picking up on what He is saying? 

Distraction can come in many forms. Technology is an obvious one, but there is a form of distraction that is perhaps less obvious: clutter.

We have physical clutter, mental clutter, emotional clutter and spiritual clutter. We have clutter in our homes, in our garages, in our offices, in our closets, in our drawers. We have clutter on our desks, on our countertops, on our shelves, on our devices. We have clutter in our relationships, in our schedules, in our habits, in our to-do lists, in our vision for our lives.

Clutter. Clutter. Clutter.

It’s time for us to recognize this long-avoided distraction and begin to address it today.

Why This Matters

We must declutter our lives so we can focus more on the things that matter most. It is difficult to hear from God with a cluttered mind, and it is difficult to avoid a cluttered mind with a cluttered home, a cluttered workspace and a cluttered life.

Recognizing and obeying God’s voice is essential to everyday life. In fact, the need to navigate every moment with Spirit-led discernment is growing day by day.

We don’t have time to waste. We all sense that something big is coming, and we have heard the prophets speak of a great end-time harvest. Each of us must be positioned to do our part in what God is planning. We must prioritize the right things, and we need to eliminate all distractions that keep us from doing so.

God’s Word tells us it is wise to number our days (Ps. 90:12). Paul instructs us to redeem the time and to make the most of every opportunity (Eph. 5:16). We would be wise to navigate every single day with these verses in mind. What better way to prepare for Christ’s return than by freeing up our time and energy to focus on what matters most?

I recently recorded a conversation with my wife, Bruna, where we talked about decluttering. It is a journey we have been on for several years.

We have seen God move in big ways as we began to consistently prioritize decluttering our home, our heads and our lives. We have not perfected the task of eliminating clutter, but we continually focus on making progress.

This focus has enabled us to more easily recognize the doors God has opened and to discern the doors He has closed. It has made it easier to be led by the Spirit every day. It has shown God that we are intentional about stewarding what He has given to us.

I want to invite you to join the journey of decluttering so we can all truly focus more on what matters most.

The Time Is Now

We cannot continue to spend so much time managing clutter in our lives. We must continually ensure that our treasure is in the right place (Matt. 6:19-21). What better time than now to reflect on where change is needed?

Decluttering your life may sound too simple to have a big impact, but don’t let the simplicity fool you. I believe most of us vastly underestimate how much time and energy clutter is taking in our lives.

It’s robbing us of precious time and energy that we could spend on so many other meaningful things. The things God has assigned us to do. The impact God created us to have. The people God wants us to influence. The rest God designed us to enjoy. The life God planned for us to live.

If this resonates with you, I want to invite you to take action today. Not tomorrow, not next week, but today.

Make a commitment to start addressing the clutter today.

Which area resonates with you the most? Physical clutter? Mental clutter? Emotional clutter? Spiritual clutter? Another type of clutter? There are many ways to get started. Just get started and keep the momentum, big or small.

Ecclesiastes 3:6b says there is a time to keep and a time to throw away. Will you be committed to decluttering your life so you can focus more on things that matter most?

Ryan S. Howard, Ph.D., is the host of Cutting Edge Faith, a podcast that helps Christians understand the times, stand for truth and grow in their faith. Ryan has worked in global purchasing for more than 15 years and has visited over 20 countries. Ryan is the author of “21 Days to a Spirit-Led Life,” a devotional available as a free download. He lives in Iowa with his wife, Bruna, and their son, John. Learn more at ryanshoward.com. Visit Ryan’s new podcast episode, “Declutter Your Life to Focus On Things That Matter | Bruna Melo Howard,” available now.

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