There is a real art to moving! In 25 years of marriage I can count 10 different moves, and prior to that there were at least 5 more…not even counting my college days. I will never forget the day my aunt taught me the art of wrapping and packing. Over the years I have honed the skill of making the best use of space in any box. I have learned the value of packing like things with like things, and last but not least the need to let somethings go.
As we prepare for this next move, I have been practicing the power of downsizing. It’s funny because there are so many out there now who are making serious bank by helping people minimize their belongings. Especially in a new year, we seem to get inundated with drive to start a new year organized and streamlined. The task of “keep”, “donate”, or “trash” can provide for us a huge sense of accomplishment. But the one I love the most is how you should ask yourself, “does this bring me joy?”as you sort through to determine what goes and what stays.
At this point in my life, I feel the need to have less. With both of our girls at college, the things I always thought I needed don’t seem to be as important. The hand-me-down furniture that we have hauled from house to house has served its purpose. And the many knick-knacks that seem to have accumulated due to my decorating hobby can find a new home as well. Asking yourself if these things bring you joy is a good practice.
But what I’ve observed the most is how we just seem to have a lot of stuff. We all seem to acquire and collect things that can weigh us down. We spend countless dollars buying more storage boxes, or building more shelves…or paying monthly rent on a storage facility. I’m guilty of all those things. And the truth is it’s exhausting to keep it up.
It is so easy for us to let our stuff, both physical and emotional, get in the way of our relationship with God and others. And yet, all of God’s story is a plea to us to let go and give it to Christ…who will carry it for us. It seems that our ego can somehow consume us and we give more value to our belongings instead of being vulnerable with God with our brokenness. And our pride can keep us from allowing ourselves in finding true, authentic relationships that can be for us the very presence of Christ in our lives.
And all the while Jesus stands in the gap inviting us; “come to me, all who are weary and burdened…and I will give you rest.” How freeing it is to be released from all that holds us back, learning to live with less, and having more of Jesus.