Word of the Week

The Stuff We Collect

Ever since we moved into our new place in Northern VA, I feel like my life has been consumed in "stuff."

Like everyone says, you move and have no idea how much you really have until you have to box it all up. And, in our case, even more so when you unpack.

While our new townhouse has a great location (good distance between both the church and Kevin's work as well as being close to so many fun things in DC), it is not as big as our previous space. While we tried to downsize before moving by sifting a lot of our living room furniture to my new office and give away/ sell a few things, it just wasn't enough. This fact was quickly discovered.

The past two weeks have been mostly about sorting through things and deciding that we don't need as much I as I thought. Goodwill has been my most frequent trip out of the house. By time I go through the process of loading bags and things in my car and get it to the store, I am just thrilled to have the process complete.  I've driven away from Goodwill every time feeling a weight of sorts has been lifted from not only my car, but our lives as well.  The more stuff I get rid of the more freedom I feel in home and in our lives as well (Kevin would have a totally different perspective on this so you should ask him about it sometime).

In Adult Sunday School today, Ernie was leading a discussion on Mark 10: 25: "It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for someone who is rich to enter the kingdom of God." We talked about how in Jerusalem there is an actual eye of the needle gate where traders used to enter the city during Jesus' time. And, how often times traders who came into the city would have to leave their goods traveling on the camels or donkeys aside the gate so that the animal could pass through first. The "stuff" just could not be the first priority if the trader wanted to get his items to market.

And while everyone shared their own thoughts on this verse and the concept of how one's riches played a role in their spiritual life, I was thinking to myself:  "I wish I still didn't have to sort through so much stuff at my house. Couldn't I just leave it all at the gate too?"

Yet, somehow, I believe the sorting is important. 

So, as we continue the process of getting settled in to life in our new home and trying to find a place for every picture frame, every book, every sentimental thing that we think we have to keep, I'm hoping that I'll make even better choices in the coming year about what stuff is really all that important. Maybe just then, I'll realize that the stuff we collect might be better chosen to focus more of my time on causes and people that are most important to me. Maybe next time I have to move, the stuff I collect will not have to collect so much of my time!