It’s amazing what you can get done with a few extra hours on your hands. Though I’ve done some work these last couple of weeks, I’m home more than usual, thanks to the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic. While I’ve done some more laid back things like reading and watching TV, I have a compulsion to be productive.

This took the form, among other things, of cleaning out some cabinets and shredding old tax returns. It’s hard to believe I’ve been back in the States long enough to have deal with returns over seven years old, but it’s true.

Little shredder at the ready — The shredding began.

As papers slipped through my fingers, it felt good to let go. I thought about how easy it is to accumulate unnecessary stuff in my life, and how nice it is to see clean shelves again.

Have you ever noticed the difference in weight between something that’s whole and shredded?

91180311_544921423110285_5568582411031150592_nShredded paper is light as a feather. I can toss an entire bag in the garbage without any effort. Unshredded paper is bulky and heavy.

As soon as I started shredding, I realized it was a perfect analogy to life’s baggage.

The weight of sin is impossible to bear. When I allow pride to build, I’m amazed at how God finds ways to help me shred some of that heavy self-worth.

The Apostle Paul was surely one who had every reason to boast in self, but he didn’t. He learned to travel light:

But whatever were gains to me I now consider loss for the sake of Christ. What is more, I consider everything a loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them garbage, that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ—the righteousness that comes from God on the basis of faith.*

What’s helping you face the need to shred these days? World health crisis? Loss of job? Isolation from others? Or, just plain old conviction of sin?

Whatever the motivating factor, don’t miss the opportunity to do some shredding. You’ll be glad you did and feel so much lighter — to his glory.

Grace and Peace


*Philippians 3:7-9 (NIV)

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