God will help you use your talents outside the box.Innocent, clean, and white, it was sitting unwelcome atop my dresser.

This rather large lidded box was intruding on my space. I’ve been ignoring it for several months knowing it would take time to sort and purge it’s contents. I didn’t want to spend the necessary time to make those decisions.

I love the beauty of a cleared surface that claims only a few visually pleasing, yet useful, items.

However, there it was . . .  This box.

Having reached around it so many times, I grew accustom to it being in my way. In fact, I barely even noticed it anymore. I subconsciously denied it’s existence.

Still, it’s tiresome presence nagged me.

It.   was.   in.   my.   way.

Determined to put an end to its bossy presence, I lifted the lid and began to appraise the box contents.

There it was. Way down on the bottom. The gorgeous, deep-green, paisley, knit strip of cloth.

A 10 inch cutting of fabric from an old favorite comfy dress. I loved how it made me feel when I wore it. So, like a good friend, I kept the swatch for years. I stored it inside-out which made obvious the in-seam pockets. But really . . . I began to ask myself, why am I saving these pockets?  (wink) I know it sounds ridiculous.

Admiring it one last time, I couldn’t help but notice the pockets, and extended fabric, was just the right shape of a Christmas stocking.

I snipped, stitched, and turned the pockets inside-out . . .

then voila . . . two Christmas pocket-stockings.

I call them pockings. 

By getting rid of the unnecessary clutter within, I could identify and use the valuable items in my ‘box’ to bless others.

In this attempt to declutter my home for the holidays, I felt God speaking deeply into my life. 

It all started the day before when a friend asked, “How’s your heart, Joy?” I didn’t want to think about that and didn’t like being singled out with that question.

She was aware I was facing some problems. But I was denying their existence.  Well, at least for the time being.

Just like that annoying box.

After all it’s the Christmas Season, and there’s much to do. Why would I want to add more weight to my already heavy schedule?  Little did I know God was preparing me to get rid of the diversions cluttering my heart and distracting me from the truly important things.

God spoke to me powerfully through this simple little box.

It wasn’t an audible voice. Instead it was a still, small, gentle voice I sensed within. During the next four days it seemed as though His entire sovereignty was focused me. It was as if God was making a thorough connection with every cell of my being so I would finally get His message and never forget it.

He was telling me to ‘lift the lid on me’.

To declutter my heart from distractions that weigh me down, and lies that tell me my gifts aren’t significant or worthwhile.

To stop hiding my gifts and talents tucked safely away inside my pockets inside a box. 

But instead to make pockings.

Yes, clearly He told me to turn my pockets inside-out. To bless other’s lives with color and design. 

Stirring deep within were the words, “Fan into flame the gift God has given you.”

This concept was certainly not new to me. However, for four days God was lavishly flooding me with analogies and practical examples to reinforce this transformational thinking.

Even the Sunday morning message was directly related, and woven with 2 Timothy 1:6. Though it was my husband who gave the message, he had no idea his message was going to be directly related to my experience because he was out of town for several days that week, and my inspirations were not part of our conversation.

I rejoice in the clarity of God’s transformational message for me. Though He’s not always so clear I’m grateful our amazing God can speak to each of us individually and creatively right where we are.

Listen to the 9:00 – 12:18 segment to hear how .