Officially motivated

We helped a family move today. Well, we really just helped load and unload a small trailer-full of boxes. They closed on their new house (they’re moving to Walnut Shade!) yesterday and started painting and transporting boxes, in preparation for the full move of furniture and everything else in the coming days.

This family has a heckuva lot of stuff, and that made me think about our my stuff. I have a lot of stuff, too, but a good portion of my stuff is either:

a) seldom or never used

b) poorly or not at all organized

c) no longer meaningful to me

d) redundant and/or unnecessary

I think it’s hard for me to accept the fact that lots of things have seasons, and that they don’t last (or even should last) forever; things like stuff, of course, but also preferences, desires, plans, and even relationships. I seem to live in the camp where everything (stuff, preferences, desires, plans and relationships) must be maintained FOREVER. I’m not sure why that is, and I’m not sure how to move out of that camp, but I do know that I tend to be the world’s worst at hanging onto stuff that I don’t need, want, or even like, and for some very impressive (ha!) reasons like these:

a) _____ gave it to me, so I ought to keep it, because getting rid of it would mean I don’t care about _____’s feelings.

b) I may need it someday, and if I throw it out now and then later have to buy it again, that would be wasteful, or we might not have the money, or (and this really is the main one) it may no longer be available. Ugh..

c) Although it’s not meaningful to me, it may mean something to ______, so I should keep it at least until I can find out if _____ cares about it.

d) It doesn’t fit or look good on me and I never wear it, but we did spend money on it, so I should keep it.

e) Even though it doesn’t mean anything to me, it should!  I should care about it, so I should keep it.

But after seeing my friend’s house crammed FULL of stuff that I can’t imagine her family ever actually using, it occurred to my lightning fast mind that I really must start going through my stuff and getting rid of things that, well, simply need to be gotten rid of. Moreover, I’m getting the sense that this doesn’t apply only to blouses and papers and (gasp!) books and houseplants and leftover dishes. I suspect it also applies to weightier matters like time commitments and expectations (particularly those I place on myself) and maybe even some relationships. . .

Hebrews 12:2 does encourage command us to lay aside every weight and the sin that so easily ensnares us, and to run with endurance the race that is set before us. Maybe I could run (move, live) more effectively if I got rid of some of those sweaters I bought but never wear. Or some of those kitchen gadgets I have to keep moving to get to the few I actually use all the time. Or some of those performance assumptions that drag me down but have no basis in truth. . .

Wow. This is getting pretty heavy. I think I will lighten up and go wash some dishes.  = )

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