February 4, 2008

What I Learned During My Winter Vacation

I delivered the last of the boxes to the consignment store today. The shop owner was thrilled to see me coming. She said my things (which have been there less than a week) have been selling really well. She also said I had some really nice things. I agree, I did have some nice things, but they were just things. Not important, really. Just stuff weighing me down. Stuff that didn't mean anything.

As R has shared with me about his trip, I realized how the Lord has woven all of this together. I explained to him that I only wanted to display items that tell our family's story, and that are truly special. I told him how I was tired of having Grandma's beautiful baskets in the attic, and the stunning Chinese scarves hidden in a box. They are invaluable treasures. R told me stories of people so stunned by the tidal surges of Katrina, they didn't have time to collect their valuables. He met family after family with nothing left to call their own. I'm so thankful the Lord prompted me to give our heritage a place of honor in our home, because these people don't have that option. How tragic it would've been if I'd spent the rest of my life ignoring the family heirlooms that are priceless to me!

Although R & I were over 1,000 miles apart, God was impressing the same message on our hearts. Accumulating things just doesn't matter. Although I knew that in my head, my heart was slow to catch on. Yet as I look around our home tonight, I see postcards we bought in Paris that remind me of a special dining experience; a collage of R's dad (who left us 8 years ago), which includes a rare photo of him holding CJ; a basket my grandmother & I made together, which brings to mind the great conversation we had that day; my great-grandmother's Bible, given to my grandfather in 1972 & passed down to me, which makes me tear up as I remember his funeral and the preacher calling him "a prince among men" (how true!); and a fedora that R's grandfather wore (I never met him, but love to hear stories about R's "Pop"). When I tuck CJ in at night, she's wrapped in the quilt my grandmother made for my high school graduation. She puts her loose change in a ceramic egg my mother made for my grandmother, which made its way back to me.

Why do I need to buy anything else, when I have these priceless jewels?! I am ashamed that I've tried to surround myself with cheap imitations that gave me no sense of self, but only served to conceal my true identity...a Daughter of the King. My Abba Father has bestowed many unique and beautiful blessings upon me. From now on, I intend to cherish each one.

(P.S. - I can't get the photos uploaded...but they're coming soon!)


Org Junkie said...

Oh how true it is and I can just feel how happy these things make you just by reading your words. Amen to that!

Janelle said...

Beautiful lesson!

His Girl said...

I've been learning this lesson myself. Thought it's hard, it really is so beautiful to learn. *sigh* oh, sweet godliness with contentment- what a wonderful goal!

fabulous post!

kmom3 said...

I can't lie...I keep checking back to see your pics you are working on! No pressure! You've just worked so hard, I'm excited to see them! :)
I have been blessed and encouraged reading about your pursuit for simplicity!
Thank you for sharing it!
:) Kimberly

Anonymous said...

What a beautiful post! I know you feel blessed to be surrounded by your treasures!

t.scott said...

Congratulations on your decluttering! Isn't it SUCH a wonderful feeling?! I did a big clean out like this 2 years ago and I am happy to tell you, I have never missed anything! :)

Monica said...

What a great reminder and inspiration you have provided me today. I so want surround myself with things of meaning rather than clutter that controls.

I saw on your other post how you displayed these precious items. Good job!!