Everything in its Place, Orderliness

There is a saying that the secret to orderliness in home care is: “A place for everything, everything in its place.”

Everything in the house has its right place. Whether it is the coffee maker or the cups, the plates or the trashcan, the bed and the dresser, the groceries and the milk in the refrigerator. It would be untidy and not orderly to keep one’s shoes at the entrance to the living room, as it would be out of order to keep one’s silverware and pots in the closet. If everything in the home is in its place, we have an orderly home. 

You might have read the story in the First Book of Kings, chapter ten, where the Queen of Sheba came to visit King Solomon. She observed how everything under Solomon’s leadership was orderly—the organization of the personnel, the home, the temple, and others. She considered it  proof of the wisdom of Solomon (1 Kings 10). 

Realistically, organizing their homes might not be some people’s priority. Hoarders, for example, have a different way of keeping their things and hanging onto everything, including things that are out of place and, therefore, out of order. However, everyone except the hoarder has a sense that such homes are out of order.   

Worldly Wisdom as Being Out of Order

I use the above imagery to appreciate Saint Paul’s teaching regarding wisdom in 1 Corinthian 3. He gives the teaching as a response to the rivalry and division in the Corinthian church. He says that worldly wisdom is foolishness before God (1 Cor 3:19). 

For him, worldly wisdom misplaces priority, the right hierarchy of values and order of things. Such was the case he dealt with in Corinth where some believers did not see that he (Paul) and the other evangelizers were mere messengers of God. The result was division in the church based on who is more gifted than the other or who in the community has more followers than the other. Seeing things in worldly perspective misses the point that we all belong to Christ and are of equal worth. “Whether Paul or Apollos or Cephas or the world or life or death or the present or the future, all are yours; and you are Christ’s; and Christ is God’s” (1 Cor 3:22-23).  


Everything in its place. Understanding what is first and what comes after it, as well as how one thing fits in the entire structure and relates to the other, is the practice of wisdom. 

For instance, if I understand the priority of life over my car, it would be wise to consider my life as deserving first place over my beautiful car. If I understand that my body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, it helps me to take proper care of it in purity of life, morals, and self-care. If we also understand the right order of things, it is wise to place things and reality where they belong in that hierarchy. 

In his classic profound and deep way of saying things, Saint Thomas Aquinas provides us an insight into the nature of wisdom. He relates his thoughts to 1 Corinthians 3:10ff also. Borrowing an idea from Aristotle’s Metaphysic (1.2) he says; “It belongs to wisdom to consider the highest cause. By means of that cause, we are able to form a most certain judgment about other causes, and according thereto all things should be set in order” (Summa Theologica, II-II q.45 a.1). Therefore, setting all things in order in the light of God as the first, provides balance to our lives and in society. It is healing to the wounded soul, heart, and world. 

I pray that we learn from Christ, the true wisdom of God, and know what is first and the priority of things in life and act accordingly.  Amen

God love you. God bless you.

Fr. Maurice Emelu 

[Thursday Week 22 Ordinary Time: 1 Cor 3:18-23; Lk 5:1-11]

Fr. Maurice Emelu

Father Maurice Emelu, Ph.D., is a priest of the Catholic Diocese of Orlu in Nigeria and the Founder of Gratia Vobis Ministries. An assistant professor of communication (digital media) at John Carroll University, USA, Father Maurice is also a theologian, media strategist, and digital media academic whose numerous works appear on television networks such as EWTN. As he likes to describe himself; “I am an African priest passionately in love with Christ and his Church.”

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