In the early years of our marriage, we moved every few years. This helped to keep us from accumulating too much.
Nevertheless, over the years, we’ve accumulated a lot of things. We’ve been given lots of gifts and we’ve bought things we liked. How about you?
Susan V. Vogt wrote a book called, Blessed by Less. For Lent one year, Susan took action: she gave away one thing a day for forty days. But what happened during that penitential period surprised her; she became so addicted to identifying unnecessary things in her life that she continued the practice for a full year. Then she began letting go of other baggage—some physical, some emotional—and found that, far from feeling poorer, she felt freer and more fulfilled than ever before. A spiritual place had opened that allowed Susan to unclutter her mind and deepen her faith.
Susan wrote, “Your life is an overflowing closet. You know it is. There are sweatshirts folded up in a corner of your mind where your children’s birthdays should be stored. That worry about the rust on the car is taking up the space that you had reserved for a slow cup of tea in the morning. I know how you feel. And guess what? There’s a way to get stuff back where it belongs: let go of some of it.
“Living lightly is not just about the stuff we accumulate, and it’s not just for people in the second half of life. It’s about an attitude of living with fewer burdens and encumbrances, whether you’re twenty-one or sixty-five. When done with honest self-awareness, the journey toward living more lightly has moved me to realize that I am blessed by less. Less stuff and worries have opened space to live with more contentment and meaning. Living lightly reminds me that my existence is more than accumulating possessions and status. Ultimately, I am on a spiritual pilgrimage. [Read more…]