An attic is a place in our homes where we store things that we don’t want to see, yet we also don’t want to let go of it just yet. We know that we don’t need them for day to day living, yet we still ‘need’ that thing in some way. If you don’t believe me, think about what you have placed in attics and or in crawl spaces. I just remembered as I am writing this that we have a small attic above our washer and dryer… and have we stored anything there? I had even forgotten that place in our house even existed.
Attics don’t only exist in our homes, they also exist in our hearts. We have places in our hearts where we can not let go of things just yet, and at the same time, we do not want to see it or use it every day in our lives. I was reminded this week in a few conversations that we as people have things we have stored there that should have went straight the trash heap – lies and mistruths people have thrown on us in their own hurt or dysfunction. Others store broken vows there. Promises that they did not deliver on that lay in pieces and parts. We revisit them from time to time, looking over them as one would a love letter from a long-gone love.
Furthermore, others of us have invited ghosts to live in our attics. Spirits of those that have hurt us. We don’t want to break off these relationships and allow them to end in healthy ways, but instead, we welcome the ghosts to dwell in our attic. The ghosts taunt us – because unless they are exorcised – they will stay in our hearts. Out of sight most of the time, but not out of our hearts.
Jesus talked once about that the new life he was bringing was like new wine. And that new wine, to properly expand needed a new wineskin. New wine needs room to expand and grow. The walls of the wineskin had to have flex to grow with the wine as it grew.
If our attics are filled with old things, lies, and ghosts, then the new ‘life’ that Jesus is willing, wanting and able to pour out will not have room to seep into the corners of our lives and expand us.
New life demands new spaces.
New spaces are clean spaces.
Today might be a good day to throw away some things in the attic of un-invite some ghosts of relationships past.