Monday, October 25, 2010


This weekend our pastor stood before a very suburban congregation and talked about building treasures in Heaven. Mmmph. Our group discussion questions kicked off asking about what treasures we are building on earth vs those in heaven. The topic just highlights how much stuff we have in our lives. The area where we live is a place where materialism is more blatant than insidious even with the recession not yet behind us, and it is easy enough to accept that excess is normal. What is not so easy is deciding where to draw the line between what's okay and what is excessive. With the week's study topic, I find myself evaluating much in our home and my own desires for that home.
Loading the 40 ft. container to ship goods to Honduras

Ten days ago, Amy (Nov. Honduras Trip Leader) and I watched as four pallets of the Waits Family's belongings were loaded onto a container to be shipped to Honduras. We were so glad to know that the family's goods were on the way since they would be moving into their home in late November. Laura? She was appreciative, but could not imagine what on earth was in the stacks of boxes that she might possibly need besides some cooking pots. Hmmm. Having visited their new home, I have seen how the place will strip away those desires outside of life's necessity. There is a strong lure in that simplicity.

And I find that in thinking of the vast difference between our friends' lives stripped bare of excess possessions, I see the danger of my own vanity squatting amongst the possessions meant to make our house a home. There is the ever-present risk of a heart that shifts from what is acceptable to the place of pride that is not honoring to God. Our home is a shelter for our family, it was the place of our reconciliation and restoration. Still, I must be wary that I not shift from the wish to offer a place of welcome and hospitality to family and guests to pride in this place. This place is, after all, just a place.

What we do, what we learn, who we welcome, and how we live in this place... those are things that matter. Those are very likely the real treasures which we are storing up. I think perhaps there are possessions which I can choose to pack up and give away. The next Garage Giveaway is only a few weeks away, and there is a personal challenge to go through this house and cull those items of good quality which will better serve another before that event. These are not items which will be replaced, but simply those goods which could do more good elsewhere.


czstout said...

Hey Holli,

I appreciate this post missy! We had a great discussion in our LG last night too and I'm realizing more and more about the "stuff" that consumes me. We always give to the GG but I usually do so with a semi closed fist thinking "I know I haven't used that in a year, but what if???". Johnny and I are digging deep in the next few weeks to purge the clutter and get some stuff to people who do really need it! Great message from Bruce yesterday!!

Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

There is a strong lure in that simplicity. This just grabs me--I feel it, have felt it, too--for a long time now. I've been purging myself of "stuff" and trying to focus more of my attention to kingdom work. And trying to pour my resources into that, too. What am I still being selfish about? I keep asking God to reveal that to me.

The Pratt Family said...

WOW, Holly! You make some excellent points! I have had that "moment" many times since we came home last March. When in a store I catch myself drifting to the "I WANT" angle...I have to remind myself, why? for what? You know the game we play in our heads. Good luck going through your house and evaluating your material possessions! Louve you,m friend!