Being brought up in a divided family cultivated a materialism mindset that sculpted all of my days. We always lived small according to the worlds standards. However, with my mother being a treasure hunter, our dwellings were always brimming with collectables. Only connecting with my dad every other weekend was conflicting for me as a child. Our visits were filled with fun and an abundance of gifts I didn’t have to earn. As the years faded away I began to realize that I truly felt love by consumption. I always had this deep void that I always thought could be filled. To fill it I had to consume, I was consuming to live. This impulsive obsession has led to unnecessary debt, total discontentment, and a constant state of overwhelmedness. What I needed to understand was that my materialism mindset had been keeping me from absolute abundance.
As you read God’s Word you will find He has much to say about Materialism. In the Bible there are 110 verses that relate to this very topic. Consuming stuff that belongs to the world is like tethering yourself to an inevitably sinking ship. The things of this world WILL fade away in God’s perfect timing ( 1 John 2:16-17). I want to know that the treasures I do have are in heaven where I know they will remain. Giving up the bursting closets, the large houses, the latest gadgets, and the most sought after shoe collections I would like to argue, actually give life and life more abundantly. Going small allows for more love and much more life deeply lived. In staying true to God’s Word I know that I need to give up my life so that I may find it.
Our big scary God sized dream is to go tiny and to live out abundance in a way that makes a huge global impact for the glory of God. A huge struggle following the materialism mindset of my childhood indeed! Braking the cycle of over consumption shows our children what it is to love Christ and not things. It shows them self-control in a world that tells them more is better. Chris and I desire to possess less stuff so that we can seek more of God. We are far from perfect and realize the journey is challenging. As this process to minimalism has gone underway I have already felt with my whole being the abundance I had been lacking all this time. That void I once had has diminished and my impulse to consume has slowly faded. I find myself on the pursuit of being surrounded by pieces that I absolutely cherish. To have less frees me up to love more and to give much of myself. Thankfully, our days have been filled with much more peace and stillness . It allows me to live out the passions that God has woven into me, and me alone. By living out a life full of abundance and love I know we will bring glory to our King and for us that means giving up the possessions that bind us.
The ultimate goal is to become more and more like Jesus. In realizing and experiencing the beauty in simplicity I feel strongly that we could reach that goal. Once we are free of the world’s propaganda and free from excess, we then free up our minds to focus on heavenly treasures. Our dream of tiny house living seems insane to most, but to us it seems necessary. The Bible is very clear in Matthew 6:19-21 when it reads “Don’t store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys, and where thieves don’t break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” What a vivid picture that is painted for us. It goes on to state in Verse 24 ” No one can serve two masters, since either he will hate one and love the other, or he will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money. ” I praise God that he has given both Chris and I this passion for less and this platform to express to you what freedom we have found. This shift is so vital for our family and I pray that it touches you to evaluate the abundance in your own life. To seek God’s face and know Him more. In the parable of the rich fool (Luke 12:15) it is stated I think very boldly, “Watch out and be on guard against all greed, because one’s life is not in the abundance of his possessions.” Our deep desire to be more like Christ has let us to this adjustment in mindset, the blinders have indeed been lifted.
The Living Beauties
by Edgar A. Guest
I never knew, until they went,
How much their laughter really meant.
I never knew how much the place
Depended on each little face;
How barren home could be and drear
Without its living beauties here.
I never knew that chairs and books
Could wear such sad and solemn looks!
That rooms and halls could be at night
So still and drained of all delight.
This home is now but brick and board
Where bits of furniture are stored.
I used to think I loved each shelf
And room for what it was itself.
And once I thought each picture fine
Because I proudly called it mine.
But now I know they mean no more
Than art works hanging in a store.
Until they went away to roam
I never knew what made it home.
But I have learned that all is base,
However wonderful the place
And decked with costly treasures, rare,
Unless the living joys are there.