Do you have a "Junk Drawer"?

My family had a junk drawer when I was growing up. It was the place we put all things that did not have a home elsewhere in the house. The drawer was full of miscellaneous trinkets and broken little contraptions and random things one would need once every 10 years or so. I think most people know what I am talking about. Now I don’t have a drawer, but I have a box shoved under my bed.

Why do we hide those items away? I suppose it is to keep the surfaces around us in our kitchens or rooms cleaner. It is so people (including ourselves) don’t have to see or deal with the junk. Interestingly enough, we know right where the junk drawer is and it usually the first place we check for the random item we need. Yet, we really never enjoy digging through the stuff and for some our drawer is so full things fall out when it is opened.

I think it will be obvious where I am headed with this but please follow me to the end. Here comes the transition....wait for it...wait for it: many of us have a junk drawer within our hearts as well. It is where we put the life experiences many of us don’t know what else to do with. All of us have made mistakes, but some of us have made really huge mistakes – ones we want to hide the rest of our life. The drawer might even contain wounds we carry from others who have hurt us. The thing about the junk drawer in our hearts is we know exactly where it is at and what is in there and we certainly don’t want others to see it.

I don’t want to come across as “preaching” today, but rather as one who struggles with this as well. I am realizing when we have a junk drawer in our hearts it prohibits us from loving with all our hearts because part of it is hidden away. We are not able to love God with all our heart and we are not able to love those around us with all our heart. We guard ourselves from vulnerability but in turn we guard ourselves from those who love us.

We say to ourselves “no one will love me if they knew the stuff in my drawer.”

That is a lie.

It is simply not true.

When we put things in our junk drawer we do not even let Jesus Christ love us. He already knows all the junk...the junk from our past, the junk we are in right now, and even all the junk in our future. Yet, He does not want us to put the junk in a drawer where we hide it and carry it and let it weigh us down.

What are we to do with it?

Jesus wants it.

Give the junk to him.

All of it.

Even the stuff that is buried so far down in the drawer that it hurts beyond words to bring it out.

I could go on and on with this but I don’t want to preach. I myself have tears in my eyes as I write this knowing I still have my own junk to give to Jesus. It is not easy and I will not pretend that it is, but let me tell you from personal experience that it is so, so, so much better once we give it to Jesus.

We are to have faith like a child, right? Well, when I was a little kid I remember I loved to go find stuff in the junk drawer and play with it to the dismay of my parents. The “junk” would be all over the house if it had been up to me, but I had fun with the stuff and found such joy in it.

Can we have that kind of faith with the things in our junk drawers?

Can we believe God can use them to bring us joy in life?

I believe so because it has been true in my life even though I am so often quick to forget. I have made some serious mistakes and deal with some serious wounds, yet God has used them for good in my life and I can celebrate what He has done in and through my “junk”. I know it sounds Christian cliché but it is true. I get so excited when I need a little tool or trinket or some random item and I find I have had it stuffed away for years in my junk box under my bed. It is a great feeling to have the perfect little tool or item for the time when you need it. Give your junk over to Jesus and allow Him to give you joy where there has been fear, shame, and condemnation. I guarantee you he will use your “junk” in exciting and miraculous ways you never would have dreamt imaginable.

I know this from my own experiences.

Don’t take my word for it. Here are some promises for you:

Galations 2:20, “I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.”

Romans 8:28, “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him,who have been called according to his purpose
. (“All” means all and that is all “all” means!!!!)


  1. Anonymous said...
    Well said. Thank you, Phil.
    Anonymous said...
    True dat, Philip. We all have junk drawers, some of ours are bigger than others. Each person's draw is unique -- no two are alike. But God wants to redeem them all.

    When we become Christians some people are good at dumping their drawers all at once and instantly freeing themselves from the clutter that has bound them up all of their life, but I would say that is the exception rather than the rule. For most people it takes time to unclutter their drawers.

    We all clean at our own pace and some of us choose to do it by ourselves. To those people I would offer encouragement to seek out a trusted friend to help them.

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