“So teach us to number our days, that we may gain wisdom.” Proverbs 90:12
One of my favorite (and well worn) tshirts reads “Chaos Coordinator.” I’m sure you can relate! It’s not that our life is really that chaotic… it’s just busy. Naturally, I do my best to control the chaos. Recently, my oldest daughter (who is 18), wanted to tackle the pantry. Talk about chaos! With six kids, our pantry was looking like it had been hit by a tornado. There was absolutely no order and everyone just stashed things in the closest empty spot. At that point, our pantry was the epitome of chaos! I admit it – I had given up! Chaos, even in the midst of attempted control, is exhausting, isn’t it?
But what a breath of fresh air a little order can be! Thanks to a few purchases on Amazon, a quick read through the Home Edit book, and a complete emptying of the pantry (the dining room became the temporary holding place) – we were able to create a space of order. Now everything has it’s place and the ultimate test came when I was out of town for an entire week and I came back to a completely organized pantry! There was a system in place and everyone knew what it was!
I find it remarkable that we tend to crave order. Maybe it’s because it gives us control. OR maybe it’s because that’s how God created us. He is, after all, a God of order. Think about it. There was an order to Creation. Likewise, there is an order to just about everything in life.
Our language has order – not only in the way the alphabet flows, but the way in which we organize our words in sentence structure. Math has order – not only with number patterns but we learn quickly that the steps of a problem can’t be completed out of order because the answer will be wrong. Science has an order – there’s a systematic way of naming things in biology, and in chemistry, a way of finding out how many protons are in a nucleus by using the order of the periodic table. The list goes on and on!
CALL TO ACTION
We get a glimpse of this order in our own lives. We develop morning routines and bedtime routines, our children grow developmentally in a certain order (sit, crawl, walk, take over house, for example). The Bible encourages us to not only notice that order (for it reminds us of the brevity of our life) but to find joy in it.
One last thought…in Latin, ordo armoris. Rightly ordered affections. It is true that two things cannot occupy the same space at the same time. And sometimes, as a result of this, our priorities, whether they are familial or spiritual, maybe business or in friendships, get out of order. Maybe it’s the chaos of the day, the busyness of life or a lack of discernment in how we use our time.
Ardent Parents: Consider this week, what things are currently “out of order” in your life that need to be put back into the right place? Maybe it’s a relationship with a coworker or maybe a reorganization of something in the home (like my pantry!). What small steps can you take at work or in your home that bring a breath of fresh air, not only to you but also to those around you, by a simple rearranging of things?