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The spot for the good news, the good word, the quick reports of the many, many wonderful news items I hear all the time and want to share with the rest of you. Expect to find the good news when you come to check out "what’s the good word?"

Monday, July 19, 2010

Stuff

You've probably watched this at some point. It's that clever little film lamenting how all our stuff is overtaking our world. I read another perspective this morning that has me thinking about my own stuff.

For more than five years now, I've lived in a hundred-year-old house. A hundred years ago people built houses without closets! Such houses compel residents to make serious decisions about just how much stuff one really needs to keep. While I've had much less stuff than in previous places I've lived where the storage options have been greater, in fact I really do love the stuff I keep.

So I was pleased to read the second perspective that says it's important to a healthy spiritual life to think more of our stuff rather than less. Our spirits are harmed because we crave more and more stuff instead of valuing and appreciating the stuff we do possess.

My old house, lack of space and absence of closets has pushed me to make all those good reduce, reuse, recycle decisions. Something comes in? Something goes out! And make good and sure that what is coming in is something I really love.

At this moment, much of my stuff is sitting in a rented storage place so that my pared-down living space shows very well to prospective buyers. But I'm really missing my precious stuff, the things that do feed my spirit: my tiny elephants, my lovely china, my exquisite hand-made textiles, the extra paintings and photos that crowd the walls, the books that overflowed my shelves.

How are you doing with your stuff? Is it overflowing your life? Or have you found ways to manage and prioritize your acquisition decisions? In which camp do you live--the one that bemoans our material existence, or the one that counts precious possessions a way to nurture your spirit?

(I would very much welcome Comments on this question. You've all been resting for a number of posts; time to get active again!)

Posted by Marion

3 comments:

  1. Good thoughts - I have been purging some of the items that I have been keeping and some are going to the church as that is where they belong. Others will be recycled or passed on to others. I need to declutter for the next phase in my life. Barb

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  2. Right Barb. I was glad you added that "that is where they belong" qualifier. One thing I've discovered in my trek through "the church library" is just how much stuff gets desposited there that really doesn't belong and should just be disposed of.

    Even books have a useful life and at the end of that, they need to be celebrated and respectfully buried--preferably NOT in the congregation's library!

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  3. I feel our lives would be less complicated without all the "stuff". The larger the home the more stuff we accumulate. The more hobbies we have the more stuff we cling to. One day we may go back to that hobby or one day we may need that even though it hasn't been used for years. It can sometimes be an ongoing "discussion" in our home. And, yes it is much easier to get rid of someone else's stuff than it is our own! The sentimental value of some things is one of the harder decisions to make too when looking over stuff. Personally I cling to those items and maybe do find some sort of spiritual aspect to them since they are items from parents, etc. who have passed on. But, then again my Dad would have said "you can't take it with you" and also what about the people after us who have to throw out all of our precious stuff because it is of no value to them.
    One of our closest friends calls the old books, other items that "possibly can be used" at church, etc. that people think they are being kind by "giving" to the church, "junk for Jesus". We now use that phrase a lot at our congregation!
    I do find a lot of things are too materialistic in our lives. We live in a wasteful society that sometimes has total disregard for what the future will bring or what harm it will do.

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