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Are you ready for back to school?

Updated on December 29, 2014

Remember the Jabez Prayer that was popular a few years ago? I do. I had a picture in my house with the verse and an embossed coin in my purse. I had the mini bookmarker and recited it more than a few times. I have been believing for God to “enlarge my territory” for many years – and He has. In more ways than one…


Stuff. The collection of no longer needed or used items in our home = stuff. And we have tons of it. Being married for over 15 years, having three kids and having lived in many different homes has created an over accumulation of stuff.

This summer I have attempted to purge the excess clutter in my house and streamline our “stuff”. (Notice I said “attempted”.) I have cleaned bedrooms, closets and cupboards. Once a room is finished I take a few minutes to look around, pat myself on the back and feel a sense of pride as I organize and downsized successfully.

I have taken out bags of half used cosmetics, ineffective cleaning products and less than satisfying shampoos. I even finally held that yard sale I have been talking about for years. I donated books to the library, clothes to the community bin and canned goods to the food pantry. I have recycled pounds of old magazines and trashed countless happy meal toys. I have no idea how we could possibly have accumulated so much unnecessary stuff!

I spent a week purging various rooms and determining how to better organize our home. I spent more time cultivating ideas on Pinterest than I care to admit. But I was certain it would all be worth it. I had my eye on the prize.

When I was finally finished, the house would be organized, which in turn would make cleaning easier and back to school less complicated. Everything would have a place and the stress that comes with lost shoes and derailed routines would be extinguished. In an organized house things would run smoothly, the house would be clean and life would be simplified. It is true. I just know it. I think this all happens in Hidden Valley, you know, the place where kids eat veggies over candy and ice cream and the grass is always green.

Strange how after all my efforts to streamline our “stuff”, my house is still overflowing with more stuff. There are rooms I finished and closets I know had completed. I remember the moments of pride I felt as I looked over the organized shelves and bins. But alas, I still haven’t found the right place for everything and going over the rooms that have been de-cluttered it appears that this is where God has answered my prayers. My territory or at least my stuff must be multiplying at night, miraculously, as I sleep. The world may say “be careful what you wish for.” But I say to Christians, be careful what you pray for.

So starting now, I will be more specific. “Dear Lord, please help me get organized and make back to school time stress free and help me to balance working, going to school, writing cleaning, kids’ sports schedules, homework and basically being the best wife and mom I can be for my family.”

And God answers me, when I take the time to pray specifically, with a resounding, “Yes, my beloved, I am here for you.”

So take a deep breath, hold on to these last few days before school begins and enjoy life a little more. God is always there to help us find our balance.


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