Ave Maria Press
Making Room for God
Decluttering and the Spiritual Life
If cleanliness is next to godliness, do our closets have anything to say about the state of our souls?
Decluttering became trendy with the 2014 release of Marie Kondo’s The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up. And while there’s no shortage of secular books promoting the practice, Making Room for God is the first book on organization from a Catholic perspective. Self-proclaimed pack rat Mary Elizabeth Sperry will help you make decluttering a prayerful, peace-filled, and soul-expanding experience.
Popular Catholic speaker and Bible expert Mary Elizabeth Sperry explores the relationship between our stuff and Catholic beliefs about grace, sin, repentance, prayer, and the common good. She boldly affirms the goodness of our stuff and of God’s abiding presence in the worldly goods all around us. She also reminds us of how sin can distort our relationships, including the ones we have with our possessions. Through spiritual disciplines, especially prayer, fasting, and almsgiving we can protect this relationship so that we own our possessions but they don’t own us.
Making Room for God offers an enticing and entertaining approach to decluttering, discipleship, and the spiritual life that makes tidying up seem almost fun. Writing from an unabashedly Catholic perspective and with convincing practicality, Sperry looks at the role of material goods in the life of a follower of Jesus. Each chapter includes humorous and often self-deprecating details of the author’s own journey through decluttering to help us believe that we, too, can simplify. Alongside these adventures are Sperry’s rich spiritual insights gleaned from extensive knowledge of the Church’s tradition and helpful exercises for freeing ourselves from clutter and the temptation to sin it so often harbors.
Sperry draws liberally from the Bible, liturgy, Fathers of the Church, lives of the saints, and Church teaching, especially that of Pope Francis, as she explores the relationship between our stuff and our spiritual lives. Practical elements offer a step-by-step approach to decluttering living spaces, getting rid of unused and excess items, and limiting future accumulation.