Friday, July 1, 2011

Give until there's nothing tying me down

You don't become happy by pursuing happiness. You become happy by living a life that means something.
Harold S. Kushner-"When All You Ever Wanted Isn't Enough"

I'm always amazed at how much stuff I manage to amass over time. Every three months, I get the itch to really clean my room, and theres always trash to throw out and things to give away- bags of it. I'm not sure how I manage to maintain the same inventory of stuff over time, but after years of giving away bags of things, I still have more in my possession than what fits into my little section of the world.

Now stuff might not seem like a problem. There are a lot of people who don't have nearly as much as I do, and I know that I should be happy that I have been as blessed as I have. And I do count my blessings- but sometimes all these blessings leave me feeling very very trapped.

We get very tied down to the things in our life- our video collections, our game systems, our books, our cards, our clothes... the list goes on and on. They make us feel comfortable somehow, as if by having things, we've won somehow. "Of course my life is worth something- I have all three matrix movies on blu-ray."

And now, thanks to the digital revolution, we've become digital packrats as well. I work with people who have 24,000 photos. Twenty-four thousand. Do you know how long it takes to tag label 24,000 photos? Well, neither do they. I have 1500 photos, and I haven't taken the time to do those. 24,000 is over the "workable" line. For most people, those photos are a headache that never get seen because it's too hard to find anything.

I have always thought of myself as the kind of person who wants to be able to get up and go at any time. I don't want to be tied down anywhere, because when the spirit moves me, (and trust me, he's moving me somewhere warmer one of these days), I want to be at the ready. And as I feel that calling coming closer and closer, I realize that this stuff has got to go.

So I made a pact with myself that every week this summer, I am giving away three things that I don't need or want any longer. Starting with my movie collection, I'm going to clean this life of mine up as best I can. And when He calls, I'm going, and I don't want to ever think I left any thing I miss behind.

I sponsor a little girl named Alison who lives in bolivia. When Alison writes to me about her things, she tells me about her pet goat, who provides for her family. She understands his value and knows what he is worth, and he is the most important thing to her. She tells me always how happy she is because her family and farm animals are well, and they have all they need. Alison, by the way, is five. She's already got the right idea in life.

 I'm 18 years behind. It's time to catch up.

**if you would like to sponsor a child, please visit Compassion or another sponsor site.**

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