I received a comment a while back asking why I was holding a cleaning challenge during Lent, it read:
Lent is a season in the Christian church intended for contemplating the life and death of Jesus. I find it very offensive that you’re co-opting a religious holiday to use for spring cleaning. You could do this challenge at any other time. Jesus doesn’t care how roomy your closet is.
Her comment made me realize I never talk about the religious significance of this challenge. I didn’t want to exclude anyone. Jesus doesn’t care about how roomy my closet is, nor do I care how roomy it is. I care more about how wasteful I’ve been and what I can do to improve.
To me, Lent is a time of prayer, sacrifice, and self-denial. Getting a little bit uncomfortable and offering it up for good intentions; to improve yourself for the better of those around you. Anyone can benefit from these practices, regardless of religion or if you don’t do Lent.
Could I donate unused clothing to those in need? Do we let food go to waste? Am I spending money on new possessions when I could be helping those in need? Yes. Having too much can be wrong and wasteful and I need to take steps to be better.
If Jesus asked the rich man to sell and give up his possessions, give to the poor, and follow Him, maybe he is asking the same of me?
These are all worldly possessions, in the end they don’t matter. By doing this I hope to become more and more detached. So I give up my things. I donate or sell them. I recycle or throw things away which are not good quality to donate. I donate a portion of the money I make from my items or use money saved to be more generous.
In addition, my material items also take time to maintain, manage, and put away. When I have more time, I can spend it with those I love, teaching my children to go forward and be decent humans. Or spend the time helping others, volunteering for a good cause, in church or in prayer.
I want to thank the person who left the comment, it was eye opening. And really made me think more about why I started this journey in the first place. It isn’t so I can have a clean home (although that is a perk). I started it so I can spend more time with those I love, so I can help others, be less wasteful, consume less, make room for prayer, and be more intentional in my life. Which will ultimately help me follow Him more readily.
Learn more about the 40 BAGS IN 40 DAYS Challenge here.