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Posts Tagged ‘simplicity’

“A man’s life does not consist in the abundance of possessions.” ~ Lk. 12:15. In fact, too many belongings rob a person of their life! People tend to seek significance through things – sometimes to show status, sometimes to hold on to precious memories of the past. But these things are deceptive. They do not offer life or sweetness. Instead, they may bring unforeseen dangers, loss, stress, captivity, and failure. But isn’t it wasteful to just throw things out? Isn’t that a misuse of the abundance of blessing we’ve been provided?

 

Clutter isn’t only unsightly, it’s dangerous to life and limb! Keeping sentimental collections of letters, loose photographs and newspaper articles could be a fire hazard. Random piles can grow to be avalanches causing painful falls or even broken bones! Physical harm isn’t the only danger that the mountain of stuff may present. Disorder may be a deterrent to having others visit, causing isolation and loneliness. It can also bring on hopelessness and depression due to the lack of relationships, and distraction from what is really important. Precious items may be lost indefinitely; they may be ruined or broken. What was meant to bring comfort and sweet memories can actually steal a person’s life.  New ideas become buried as changing plans or direction become an insurmountable task. Frequently, the packrat will just give up. Clutter is not only unpleasant, but it is also devastating.

On the other hand, simplicity and order bring freedom. Simple is sustainable. There is no need to be concerned about children becoming injured because of hazards. Stress is relieved. Generally speaking, the person whose home is organized can think more clearly, and they have less anxiety. Friends and visitors may stop by without bringing embarrassment or shame. There is no room for guilt, only joy! Doors open in many ways. If someone in the family suddenly loses their job and the family must move, it is much less daunting. If an elderly parent becomes sick and needs a place to stay, there is both room, and opportunity to step in and meet that need. Simplicity offers the freedom that makes life enjoyable in every aspect.

While orderliness seems to be a minor issue, in fact, the believer’s Christian testimony is at stake. Paul said of the church, “Let all things be done decently and in order.” (1 Cor. 14:40) The fruit of the Spirit is self-control. (Gal.5) Jesus instructed His followers to trust the LORD for their daily bread (Matt. 6:11), and not lay up treasures for themselves here on earth where they can be easily destroyed, ruined, or stolen. (Matt.6:19-20) The author of Hebrews exhorts believers to “cast aside every weight,” implying that anything that hinders fulfilling God’s work is destructive clutter, spiritually. Instead of hoarding, believers are to be generous and share with those in need. As stewards and ministers of God – it is vital to not be distracted or overcome by the things of this world, but rather use them for the benefit of the Kingdom of God. By being diligent with the stewardship God has given, the faithful have an expectation of great reward. As King Solomon once penned, “Diligent hands will rule!” (Prov. 12:24) The testimony of the believer depends on being faithful with what God has given. “It is required of a steward that one be found faithful.” (1 Cor. 4:2)

There is no life-enhancing benefit to clutter. The desire to have and have more, the collecting of stuff – steals joy, opportunity, and testimony. It creates dangers emotionally, spiritually, and physically for ourselves and those we care about. Eliminating unnecessary junk frees us to think, invent, fellowship, and serve without the burden of a heavy load. It is not the man with the most stuff that wins in the end, but the one who has invested the most in the Kingdom of Heaven. Surely, he will be rewarded richly! In all things, it is most important to place our trust and our treasure in God instead of material possessions. He is faithful. He has provided all we need for life and godliness. An overabundance of things actually robs us of our lives, but He came to give us life, and that abundantly!

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