O God, God of our fathers Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, keep this generous spirit alive forever in these people always, keep their hearts set firmly in you. And give my son Solomon an uncluttered and focused heart so that he can obey what you command, live by your directions and counsel, and carry through with building The Temple for which I have provided.”
1 Chronicles 29:18-19 (MSG)
You know that drawer in your kitchen that just keeps collecting junk over time? Ours can get so full of “clutter” (old batteries, pens, paper clips, coupons, cords, dog toys, and of course duct tape) that we can barely open it. It gets more filled up when I am in a hurry and my wife tells me to clean the kitchen counter. So, I just shove stuff in there.
Sometimes my heart gets like that. I get in a hurry in life and just shove junk in it to make the outside look clean. My heart gets full of guilt, deceit, old hurts, bitterness, lust, greed, and anger. However, there are consequences to living this way. The other day, I was reading my Bible, but nothing was getting into my heart. It was already too full of all of that clutter. A cluttered heart doesn’t hear God, won’t respond to people, and can’t build.
Solomon was tasked by God and by his father, David, with building God’s temple. When David prayed for Solomon, his prayer was for God to give him a crucial thing required to build something great: an uncluttered and focused heart. God wants each of us to build something great with our lives. It’s frustrating to want to and try to build something great but not have the heart capacity to succeed. Do you have a cluttered heart?
Here are four steps God provides for us to unclutter and focus our heart so we can build the life God destined us to build.
An Uncluttered Heart is Honest
How happy is the person whose sin the Eternal will not take into account.
How happy are those who no longer lie, to themselves or others.
Psalm 32:2 (V)
I have recently come to grips with the fact that I am a deceitful person. I lie. I lie to myself, lie to my wife, lie to friends, lie to God. I do it to look good, to avoid conversations and consequences, and to pretend I am someone I am not. Whenever I am deceitful, my heart fills up with clutter and gets weighed down – leaving no room for God or anyone else. I am now taking time every day to unclutter my heart with honesty in prayer to God, and also in conversations with my wife. When I clean my heart of everything that locks it up, I am so much more free and happy, able to connect in relationships and pursue the life God destined me to live.
Do you like being completely honest? Do you see it as the way to be free and close to God and the people you love? What is the most difficult area of your life to be honest with yourself? Who have you communicated this to? Are your friends helping you with this area?
An Uncluttered Heart Confesses
3 When I refused to confess my sin, my body wasted away, and I groaned all day long. 4 Day and night your hand of discipline was heavy on me. My strength evaporated like water in the summer heat. Finally, I confessed all my sins to you and stopped trying to hide my guilt. I said to myself, “I will confess my rebellion to the Lord.” And you forgave me! All my guilt is gone.
Psalm 32:3-5 (NLT)
When our hearts are cluttered and weighed down by guilt, we get fatigued, we complain, and our strength dissipates. We often view confession as a challenge – a bummer if you will. The Bible teaches us that confession is the path to being free and ridding ourselves of guilt.
Is guilt weighing you down and making you tired? What makes you feel the most guilty? Have you told God and the people close to you? Guilt can be enslaving. You can be free of the guilt if you’ll open up about it.
An Uncluttered Heart Loves To Pray
Therefore, let all the godly pray to you while there is still time, that they may not drown in the floodwaters of judgment. 7 For you are my hiding place; you protect me from trouble. You surround me with songs of victory.
Psalm 32:6-7 (NLT)
God knows everything that is in our hearts. Prayer is vital because it is the time where God can reveal to us what he already knows. A cluttered heart is hard and unable to understand what it is feeling. We will get frustrated and quit if we are not going to God to figure out what is in our hearts. When we pray and allow God to reveal our hearts, we get motivated because God is able to move and inspire us.
Do you enjoy praying and telling God everything in your heart? Do you see prayer as a place in your day where you can relax, find relief, and refill?
Let down through prayer and tell God everything you feel – good, bad and ugly. If you don’t know what you feel, tell God you need help understanding what you feel. God wants to reveal the path to close relationships with him as well as those he’s put in your life.
An Uncluttered Heart Sees God’s Destiny
The Lord says, “I will guide you along the best pathway for your life. I will advise you and watch over you.
Psalm 32:8 (NLT)
God knows the best pathway for each of our lives. He has a great destiny for each of us and our families. Uncluttering our heart and focusing on God enables him to show us the life he wants us to live. We can live in complete security knowing God is showing us the way to go.
An uncluttered heart can see God moving even when we are traveling through uncharted territory or difficult times. An uncluttered heart can find joy in the journey toward fulfilling their destiny.
Uncluttering your heart is a decision. A decision that will lead to a series of daily decisions: to seek God through prayer and study, to get honest, to communicate, to seek friendship, to believe God’s hand is leading you to your destiny.
Are you ready to get started?
Let’s do this.