Wednesday, June 20, 2012

get out of my house!

so I'm really far behind on blogging about 7 stuff (for those who care). May was possessions month. Getting rid of the excess - 7 things a day, intentionally (not just dropping junk at Goodwill) Honestly, I only did okay. Not for lack of want, but for lack of time. May was a super busy month - soccer games & practices, dance class, end of school activities/plays/parties/concerts/teacher appreciation/etc. Going through everything you own is VERY time-consuming...which is probably only a problem for people like me who have WAY too much stuff! I was (and still am) very motivated to get rid of stuff. I HATE clutter & excess & crap I don't need, use, or want. I LOVE giving to people in need.

I am a member of an online yard sale facebook group for Buda/Kyle. At the first of the month I posted that I was giving stuff away to those in need & to contact me with what you need and if I have it I will give it. I wasn't sure if I would get any responses, but I wasn't quite sure where else to start, so I gave it a try. I actually got several replies (and a few nice comments) from people in need. A mom in need of some 4T boys clothes, a pregnant mom needing 5T boys clothes and baby items, a volunteer at the Hays Women's Shelter asking for childrens' swimming items for their summer programs, and a few other requests that I was unable to satisfy like for a window A/C unit, and little girl clothes. The recipients were so grateful - I loved delivering the items to their houses and seeing the little boys excited for new clothes, and the moms grateful for diapers/bottles/blankets/clothes for their babies on the way. It's a completely different experience than dropping off boxes at Goodwill or Salvation Army. I know those businesses do good work and help the needy, but there's such a disconnect from the beneficiaries of those donations that it usually just feels like, "I'm so glad to have this junk out of my house" instead of, "I'm so glad I could bless someone's life today."

I still have boxes of things in my house, and a ton more to go through and get rid of. I'm not stopping just because the month is over. Jesus knew how possessions can become lord over us - the more we have, the more enslaved we are to it. Having a big house comes with big maintenance bills, having computers comes with internet bills, too many clothes - more dressers and closet space needed, the list goes on. I'm not saying we're getting rid of everything, but there is absolutely no reason for every corner of my 3500 square foot home to be packed. I would LOVE to have an empty closet somewhere in the house, or nothing in the attic, or a garage with usable space for projects. I practically wear the same 10 shirts over and over, so why do I need 3 rails full of clothes in my closet. There is a woman at a shelter in need of nice work clothes for her new secretary job, or a homeless man that could get work if he just had some decent interview clothes. St. Louise house needs furniture and other home goods for their apartments for homeless single moms (they let the women take everything with them when they are able to move into housing of their own). I have cupboards full of dishes I never use.

I'm so excited about the freedom I feel in giving things away. And have you even thought about how much easier cleaning is when there's less to clean around? I'm also planning a garage sale (when I'm finally done going through everything) where I'll be giving all the money to a charity (my heart is for orphans and I'm partial to HELP, Family Legacy, and Compassion, so maybe dividing it between them). The possibilities are endless. We have so much to give. We need so much less than we think we do, and if we can just really grasp that and stop consuming and start giving we can make such a big difference.