Thought of the Day: Spring Cleaning

It seems that, traditionally, the three days between Palm Sunday and Holy Thursday are devoted to thoroughly cleaning the house in preparation for Easter.

By coincidence, I actually spent most of the weekend cleaning up, including organizing my old paper files. As usual when I look back over the last few years of my life, it was a melancholy experience, with many a missed opportunity, many a fizzled endeavor, and many a mark of how much time has passed with how little to show for it.

Depression has a compounding effect over time. You start out doing little because you’re mildly depressed and don’t feel like it, or lack discipline. Then you begin to realize how much time has passed and how far you still are from your goal, how little progress you’ve made. It seems to close in around you, bearing with it the sense that you may be simply incapable of your ambitions, or, worse still, that you might have had a chance once, but now you’ve missed your chance.

It’s important to remember that these thoughts do not come from Above. I think if there’s one thing God absolutely never does, it is discourage us. When you see the black gulf of a hopeless existence seeming to yawn at your feet, you may know for certain that it is not from God. Therefore, there is no reason at all not to ignore it.

See, there’s a fear component about this: a worry of, “but what if this is a reasonable warning from my brain, and if ignoring it sets me up for a crash later? What if I’m playing the ostrich by plunking my head into the sand? What if I’m deluding myself?” And above all “wouldn’t it be irresponsible to ignore these fears?”

Remember that this does not come from God and you have your answer to that last question. And with that answer, the other fears may be safely thrown aside. Maybe you are being the ostrich, but so be it; you’ll be an ostrich who is at least still trying.

While doing your spring cleaning this week, maybe take some time to clean out your brain a little as well.

I am strong! I am brave!

2 thoughts on “Thought of the Day: Spring Cleaning

  1. Petty clarification: God may well discourage us from this or that specific course of action, on the eminently reasonable ground that, if we knew as well as He does how it would end, we wouldn’t want to do it anyway. What is absurd is to suppose that He would discourage us *generically* – or, to put it another way, that accidie could under any circumstances be one of the gifts of the Spirit of fortitude.

    Also, may I just take this moment to lay a scholar’s curse on Photoshop? I have no doubt that there are now people in the world who are irreparably convinced that ostriches really do the head-in-the-sand thing, because *they’ve seen a photo of it*. (Honestly, why couldn’t popular idiom just be satisfied with talking about turtles retreating into their shells? -Well, because everyone knows the excellent reason turtles have for doing that, so it wouldn’t make the person being compared to them sound stupid enough. That’s the trouble with Nature being well-designed: you can’t get proper types of human folly out of it without spreading baseless slanders against innocent ratites.)

    Liked by 1 person

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