About the Book

The Uncluttered Heart is your companion through the busy weeks of Advent and Christmas. Published by Upper Room Books. Learn more.

About the Author
Beth A. Richardson

Remember God with daily email during Advent (beginning Nov. 30).
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Daily text messages are not available this year from The Uncluttered Heart. So sorry!! I'll miss texting you!!


On the Eve of the New Christian Year

Another year has passed and we stand at the edge of a new year on the Christian calendar. Advent starts next Sunday, November 30. I am looking forward to spending another season with you.

Dig out your Advent wreath sometime this week -- and don't forget the candles. We'll start our journey of uncluttering hearts next Sunday. Thank you for traveling with me. I am so grateful for you, for the old friends and the new ones.

The daily emails from The Uncluttered Heart will begin on Sunday and will continue through January 6. Anytime you need a break, you can stop the emails by clicking on the unsubscribe link at the bottom of the email.

The Uncluttered Heart book is available in both print and Kindle format. You can get the printed book from The Upper Room or Amazon. Here is a link to the Kindle edition.

Blessings to each of you and thank you for your presence in my life.



All Saints

For all the Saints ...
Who birthed and nurtured,
Mothers and fathers,
Grandfathers and grandmothers,
Aunts, uncles, cousins, friends,
We are grateful.
Alleluia, alleluia!

For all the Saints ...
Who loved and cherished,
Husbands, wives, partners,
Friends and lovers,
We are grateful.
Alleluia, alleluia!

For all the Saints ...
Who died too soon,
Whose absence pains us still,
We remember with tears,
Aches in our hearts,
And yet, we are grateful.
Alleluia, alleluia.

For all the Saints ...
Who taught and mentored,
Teachers and spiritual directors,
Older friends and younger prophets,
Guiding us, inspiring us,
We are grateful.
Alleluia, alleluia!

For all the Saints ...
Who watch over us,
Pray for us,
Sit with us,
Guide us,
We are grateful.
Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia!


A Blessing for the Empty Place

You sit in the empty place that is left,
After the death, the arrangements, the service,
The cards and calls and emails,
The departure of family,
The thank you’s and acknowledgements.

Left with the emptiness,
The space that can never be filled
In quite the same way.

You see a shadow, hear a sound,
Taste a food she used to love,
Start to tell him something about your day,
Smell a blanket or pillowcase,
And your eyes and heart are filled with tears.

The first week, the first month, the first birthday,
The first holiday, the first anniversary,
These bring you to the place of remembering,
The place of exquisite, lonely sorrow.

Bless you and your memories.
Bless the tender heart that beats within you.
Bless the empty space that can never be filled.

The shadows, the smells, the tastes, the thoughts,
Transform their pain into blessings,
Signs that though you live in that desperately empty place,
She walks beside you,
He laughs in the shelter of your heart.

That empty place
That can never be filled
In quite the same way
Is filled
With love.



Christ is risen! Christ is risen indeed!
Then Jesus said to [the women], "Do not be afraid; go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee; there they will see me."
- Matthew 28:10 (NRSV)

Audio Lectio for Easter Sunday: Pray Matthew 28:1-10.

Scripture Readings for Easter Sunday (April 20)

Photo Credit: © Beth A. Richardson. Dogwood bloom outside The Upper Room.

Holy Saturday

We wait in sorrow and in hope.
They took the body of Jesus and wrapped it with the spices in linen cloths, according to the burial custom of the Jews. ... And so, because it was the Jewish day of Preparation, and the tomb was nearby, they laid Jesus there.
- John 19:40, 42 (NRSV)

Scripture Readings for Holy Saturday (March 30) Photo Credit: Photo © Beth A. Richardson. The Pietà by Michelangelo housed in St. Peter's Basilica in the Vatican City.