Don’t leave behind all that stuff!

I went to an estate sale yesterday. It was super interesting stuff! An old Remington typewriter desk, two sewing tables, a whole kitchen of vintage appliances in great condition, a beautiful piano and a couple extra instruments, old furniture – also in great condition, and a room full of art supplies and books.

I was so tempted to buy… Yet not at all interested! This was a huge mentality change for me as compared to a few years ago, or even a few months ago! Previously I would have thought of getting some art supplies, in case I wanted to try it out. Or some instruments in case I wanted to try them. I found an old journal with this old ladies notes from when she was starting a home – cut outs from magazines in the 50s, with notes like, “this is an ideal layout for a kitchen,” “some bedroom options,” and “happy children playing!” I think I have done the same thing myself, in various places, over the last 15-20 years, coming of age. I wanted to take it home as a symbol of connection to this perfect stranger. Plus, it was so quaint and old fashioned. But also in that room were boxes of old cards. Boxes of travel brochures and maps. Boxes of unused art supplies. Cases of books not opened in years. And that was what allowed me to walk out of there empty handed.

Growing up I always heard this Bible verse:

“Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal; but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” Matt. 6:19-21

And of course I understood what it meant and what it was teaching. But only now have I really understood the implications. These people having an estate sale were leaving treasures on earth for moth and rust to destroy, and “thieves” to steal, for $1 here, and $10 there. All that trouble to box up those maps and travel brochures, but now they will likely be thrown away after being picked through by dirty hands.

I don’t want that! I want to only trouble myself with maintaining the items that I truly need to live day to day. If I no longer need it, away it will go! I won’t keep the family heirlooms if they are no use to me. A few of them are useful! But the rest, maybe someone else will get use out of them and I won’t need an expensive piece of furniture to keep them from breaking or getting dusty.

I came home from the estate sale and told Shaun. He said, “so basically you don’t want to leave behind all that stuff?” But that’s exactly it! I want to leave behind happy memories, touched hearts, and enriched souls. How will I do that if I’m always cleaning up the clutter? How will I do that when I’m always shopping for more, better things? I won’t, so let’s find a way to avoid those things, shall we?


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