Spring Cleaning for the Soul

By Julia Callahan

I’m an extremely clean and organized person. Truly. My standard of clean is usually cleaner than most others’ ideas of what clean is. Anyone who knows me knows that I compulsively fluff my pillows on my couch, straighten my room, arrange my desk, sanitize everything, and make detailed lists of everything I have to do that day. I do this because, well, just because it makes me feel good. It makes me feel productive, gives me a clear mind, and gives me a purpose for the day. It’s my routine, my habits, my way of daily life. I’m proud of it. I prefer to live with my mental and physical state folded into neat boxes as opposed to thrown in a corner or shoved into a messy drawer.

Now that spring is upon us, I find myself pushing my organization a little further in hopes of keeping up with “spring cleaning.” It’s easy for me to do, especially being at home this season. The only difference to my normal routine is going through my clothes and my knick knacks to see what I can part with this year. The hardest thing I’ll do is decide whether to donate it, regift it, or throw it away.

Wouldn’t it be nice if there was some way for me to organize my relationship with my faith? I ask myself this a lot. Truth is, as prevalent as spirituality is in my life through school and my community, I feel very organized but I don’t always feel connected, especially now with so much uncertainty in this state of our world. Routine for me doesn’t seem to work when it comes to connecting spiritually. If organizing my faith made me feel as good as organizing my room did, maybe I could make a change. Instead I constantly eb and flow in my relationship with Jesus. I’ve come to the realization that my “spiritual spring cleaning” can’t follow the same formula that I use for everything else. My relationship with Jesus will be ever changing, and what I need at different points in my life will change, too. Perhaps for now all I can do is take it one day at a time and be open to the changes and face them when they arise. I’ve realized that my relationship with Jesus cannot be minimized to a list or a routine because it’s just too complex. While frustrating at times, I’m going to try to view this complexity as a good thing. Each day has its ups and downs, and that’s ok.

I think my ideal scenario would be to feel the same satisfaction from scheduled daily prayer as I do when I check off an item on my list or crease a fold on my blanket just right, but for now, I’ll try to focus on the spontaneity of our God, and hope that a peaceful relationship with God grows in me just as the winter grows into spring.