Drowning in Stuff

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For six or seven years, I’ve been significantly burdened by all the STUFF we own. Everywhere I look, there’s clutter, STUFF we don’t need or use. I have no problem stating the brutally honest truth about all that STUFF.

I can’t stand it.

It’s exhausting to manage and suffocating to my soul.

I don’t need anymore STUFF.

One of the tasks I’m bound and determined to get a grip on between now and the end of the school year is decluttering our house. The past two and a half weeks, I’ve begun to dig out. I realized from the start that it’s going to be a huge job. In fact, I’ve just begun to scratch the surface with a partial clean-out of one side of our master bedroom, a partial clean-out of our master bathroom, a partial clean-out of our baby’s bedroom, and a pre-Easter dump of seasonal goods we don’t use anymore.

I’ve sorted through old t-shirts and barely-worn lingerie stuffed in dresser drawers, jewelry from junior high, over-the-counter medicines already expired, gross smelling lotions only partly used, and hand-me-down toddler clothes that didn’t get used nearly enough. I donated several pair of pants that didn’t fit anymore, sweaters that have gone out of style, necklaces and bracelets I once thought were real gold but discovered were all fake when I brought them to the Gold Guys in hopes of cash. Books that no longer resonate have been tossed in a donation bag along with the free, but ugly hair clips that came with the hair dryer we bought in December. And I’m embarrassed to say that I’ve saved boxes for a year now. You know why? Because I want to sell a bunch of valuable STUFF on eBay, but putting all that STUFF up for auction takes so much time, I haven’t even gotten to it. So there sit the boxes.

The STUFF.

It’s a burden.

Whether we know it or not, whether we’ve had time to sort through it or not, whether we’ve had time to realize how much we’ve collected or not, it’s a burden to our souls.

We collect, purchase, acquire, buy and borrow hoping all these things will fill the holes in our hearts, this longing for something more. But STUFF doesn’t fill holes in hearts. STUFF fills our houses, fogs our brains, clogs the free-flowing life waiting for us on the other side.

We’re drowning in STUFF.

Me, you, our whole culture.

More is better. Or is it?

What if less is truly more?

What if we stopped believing the lie that STUFF will make us happier?

What if we stopped expecting STUFF to fill the holes in our hearts?

What if we decluttered once and for all?

What if we realized that a life worth living has nothing to do with the acquisition of more STUFF?

What if we released the STUFF and opened our hearts to the possibility that freedom’s waiting on the other side of STUFF?

What if we need clean places, wide open spaces so our hearts and souls can breathe and just be for once?

What if?

greensig

 

 

2 comments
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  • Tracy Sather NelsonMarch 27, 2015 - 12:49 am

    Wow Amy! I seriously felt like you were speaking about me also!!! So true!ReplyCancel

  • Susan BaunsgardMarch 21, 2015 - 3:33 am

    Glad to see you are donating what you don’t need. I used to do this type “cleaning” every year after Christmas. I used this time to reorganize the boys bedrooms including getting rid of seldom used clothing and or toys.ReplyCancel

  • Missy ShemickMarch 20, 2015 - 6:14 am

    Thank you Amy. It’s not easy but I can see the wisdom of your words of only keeping things my daughter may appreciate someday. It feels wrong to donate, throw away, or sell these things…but I’m sure my parents would rather I free my soul from this clutter….ReplyCancel

  • Tom BaunsgardMarch 20, 2015 - 6:10 am

    It’s simple… Less is more.ReplyCancel

  • Carol FemlingMarch 20, 2015 - 1:57 am

    I’ve waded through STUFF for so many years that I’ve just had it with STUFF!! Through the years I’ve tried to clean out and get rid of STUFF every year. We’ve moved several times…in and out of extra apartments, in and out of houses, in and out of storage units and I’ve had garage sales every year to get rid of the STUFF. Now that we’re in a much smaller place, we are way down on STUFF, but I still see plenty of STUFF that can go that’s in our garage. UH!! Amy….. Keep on plugging away at getting rid of the STUFF! It feels good!! Like the magnet on my fridge says, THE BEST THINGS IN LIFE AREN’T THINGS or “stuff”!! SO true!! 🙂ReplyCancel

  • Missy ShemickMarch 20, 2015 - 12:21 am

    I have alot of my parents things…hard to part with…but still clutter nonetheless. Any help with this?ReplyCancel

  • Silvana XhelilajMarch 20, 2015 - 12:15 am

    Could not agree more Amy!
    It’s a problem more than you think in our society. I went through this process last year and could not feel any better!
    Not that the stuff does not keep coming with all the birthdays but i try hard not to let it in. Gave it most of it away for free, and yes i did think of selling it..
    It feels so liberating to be free of the junk and focus on the things that you would really need in life, like spending time with the kids, focusing on your family and your relationships. That you will take with you forever. .ReplyCancel

  • Sandra Heska KingMarch 19, 2015 - 10:14 pm

    You’re talking my language, girlfriend. I’ve been working on this forever. Clutter morphs. The thing I love most about traveling is the simplicity of a room away from home. I’ll know I’ve solved the problem when I’m glad to get home. 🙂ReplyCancel

  • Cathie 'Hardy' PearsonMarch 19, 2015 - 9:55 pm

    Fantastic post, Amy! So much honesty & truth!!ReplyCancel

  • Missy Larson UdstrandMarch 19, 2015 - 8:10 pm

    Love your post, so trueReplyCancel

  • Colleen Chastek LeaverMarch 19, 2015 - 7:25 pm

    Best post ever :-))!!ReplyCancel

  • Stephanie SpencerMarch 19, 2015 - 4:15 pm

    I think this is my first comment here! I put you in my reader a few months ago 🙂

    I just wanted to say yes to the need for sapce: both physically and spiritually. We need it, and we don’t have nearly enough of it.

    I think this is actually what the desert experiences are in the Scriptures- God gives us space between what was and what will be, space to remember who we are, think about what we will become, and let go of all the trappings that hold us back from both those journeys.

    Good luck. Wading through stuff is hard. Much harder than it seems.ReplyCancel

    • AmyMarch 31, 2015 - 10:59 pm

      Totally agree with you on the desert space, Stephanie. That’s exactly where I’m coming out of. LOVE your words…”God gives us space between what was and what will be, space to remember who we are, think about what we will become, and let go of all the trappings that hold us back from both those journeys.” So good. Thank you for sharing that great wisdom and truth.ReplyCancel

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