Does it Spark Joy?

I’m not the only one who has been inspired by decluttering guru Marie Kondo. Her Netflix series, “Tidying Up” has revolutionized homes—and lives—across the world. She helps clients clear the clutter by challenging people to sort through their possessions item by item, asking a simple question: Does this spark joy in you? If yes, keep it. If no, it leaves.

I went on my own quest for a neater, happier existence—starting with my bedroom closet. Although it was painful, I followed her trusted tidying philosophy and piled everything that was in my closet on my bed. Yikes.

The Adventure of Tidying Up

I picked up each item of clothing and asked, “Do I need this? Have I really worn this in the last year? Does this item spark joy?”

Hours later, joy was sparking on all cylinders as I placed the clothes that “made the cut” in my closet and bagged the rest for donation. I now walk into a closet that looks and feels efficient, clean, neat and all things tidy. I think my girl Marie Kondo would be proud.

Finding Joy Outside of Possessions 

Through this simple exercise, I realized that Kondo is revealing our distorted and rather clingy relationship with possessions. But she does it in such a way that is not shaming or demoralizing, rather it’s enforced with grace and acceptance. It challenges us to have a posture of thankfulness for our abundance and a realization that we can live happily without that abundance.

From my perspective, Kondo is meeting a real need and problem many people face with materialism, shopping addictions, and perhaps an unhealthy dependence on things. The process of decluttering our homes, minds and spirits demands us to treasure what matters. Matthew 6: 19-21 tells us:

“Don’t store up treasures here on earth, where moths eat them and rust destroys them, and where thieves break in and steal.  Store your treasures in heaven, where moths and rust cannot destroy, and thieves do not break in and steal. Wherever your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be.”

If you haven’t hopped on the Kondo craze yet, why not give it a try? It just might wake you up to the treasures that you can’t touch or feel. It could possibly reveal where true joy comes from. A bonus: it might motivate you to turn your trash into someone else’s treasure.

  • March 4, 2019
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