What does my house have to do with capacity?

We have lived in our 3×1 duplex for around six years now. This was the year that we had planned to sell and move to a larger place. Our house is cluttered, doesn’t have a bath (I love baths), a small kitchen with lots of issues and is very limited with storage options. I was so excited as we started to prepare for putting it on the market. We had valuations. We packed up so much and stored boxes at very gracious parents’ houses. We reorganised some spaces. We were almost ready to put it on the market so we arranged for our chosen agent to come out to sign up. We knew that market had headed down but were unprepared for quite how much our value had dropped by. We wouldn’t be able to afford to sell and get the places we had been looking at. I was devastated and certainly did not have an accepting attitude! I know I wasn’t the most pleasant person to be around as I came to terms with this disappointment. It was a battle to get back to a place of being content. God had a big job on His hands in helping to chip away at my heart. I am mostly there now, although as each set of boxes and bits of furniture that we had been storing were brought back, it was another blow.
So how does this disappointment and seemingly very unsuccessful venture relate to my journey of increasing capacity? I have felt God’s prompting and reminder that having a bigger house with some of the features I feel are missing here won’t solve the internal issues in me or my family. My house won’t magically become more organised simply because it is bigger. (It may help for sure but only if I get more motivated and organised.) I have been challenged by the concept of being faithful with the little you have so that you can be faithful with the more when you get it.
My home being more organised and less cluttered has a huge impact on my headspace and ability to rest, in turn impacting on my capacity to focus and do what I need to do. I can’t just wait for “that time” to put into practice the skills and sometimes tough choices that are needed. So I am making the effort to continue the good work begun when we were looking at moving. I am trying to sort even more and get rid of the stuff that we really don’t need or use. I’m trying to make an effort to clean, organise and maintain my home. If you could look around my house at this moment, you may not believe me and I have certainly slacked off on this recently. I need to keep making the small changes that will build up to the big. I also need to learn how to work with my family on this to reduce the tension of feeling like I am the only one making an effort and the arguments over the state of the place.
Another huge outcome of this season is another layer of learning to trust God even when things don’t go the way I envision and plan for. I have had to relearn how to wrestle through disappointment without allowing bitterness to take root. I have all the head knowledge of this but living it out with God is a whole other matter! Thank God for His grace as I need it every moment.
In the midst of all of this, I have struggled with feelings of guilt about how important this has been to me when millions around the world live in such poverty and need. I have watched the Syrian refugee crisis and been reminded of how tremendously blessed I am. While I don’t think it is wrong for me to work towards a bigger house, I never want it to be at the expense of contentment and gratitude.

I may not be able to see the reasons for this delay in getting what my heart longs for but I trust that my God knows better than I do what is good for me. He is far more interested with the state of my soul and spirit and those of my family than the material things.

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This post is part of a series called “My journey of increasing capacity” written as part of the Write 31 Days challenge. To read other posts in this series please click on the button below, in the side bar or on the Write 31 Days 2015 tab at the top.

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