the gift of simplicity

Best Husband in the World gave me an entire morning/afternoon OFF. 'Had a restorative long coffee with an artist friend early. Then, for the rest of the day, I was alone.

Not that I don't like being with Moses. You know I do. But there was some serious stuff I just needed to process with the Lord, and sometimes it's hard to do that while a kid is measuring you with a measuring tape, punching buttons on your laptop, and grabbing your left arm. like what is happening right now... hang on...

Hahaha. OK. Redirected.

Anyway, obviously no time to type everything here. But one specific thing I was needing guidance from Lord on was how to get untangled from STUFF.

Honestly, I feel like I'm drowning in it, and that is hindering my ability to pursue a more focused life. I don't know how I would even begin to pack/move right now. Even if we found the perfect house at the perfect price. We've lived here seven years, and every room is full. I have no idea how much of this we really need or how much we could do without. Therefore, I don't know how much room we ultimately need to live.

This feels daunting. It would take weeks (or months) to really minimize, and I have the attention span of Dory the fish. I can barely find my way back out of Wal-Mart once I enter those sliding doors.

Also, I don't like spending energy developing perfectly amazing rooms. Only rarely will I look at women's magazines or decorating blogs trying to find cute new things I could do with this or that. When I do, it's task-oriented, not joy-oriented.

Not that redecorating is wrong, it's just that rooms don't interest me much when there are books to read. So for YEARS, I've just kept a Pottery Barn or two in the bathroom for ideas. I love that style. And I figure if I can't learn what's happening in there, I can live without it. So anyway, what I'm saying is that I'm very rarely the sort of girl who starts simplifying rooms for fun.

(Rabbit trail. What I REALLY wish is that I could get my friend Katherine to get her tail out of Mexico and come plan my everything for me. She's cool enough to hang pictures her daughter painted dancing with her first pair of real toe shoes, tears up wallpaper into pieces before putting it on the wall, and picks the perfect greens. Hint. Hint. Come plan my life, Katherine.)

Anyway. The clutter is prohibiting any major life changes I might need to make. So maybe I should start there. If you're naturally domestic, this might sound like an overstatement, but it's going to take the power of God to make this happen. I would appreciate your prayers.

I'm thinking about starting with one room. Probably our bedroom so when I wake up there every morning, it will remind me to keep going.

I'm also motivated because there are several good faith-based charities that need stuff donations right now. Bobby heard last night that clothes were a specific need. (If you actually know me and live in my town, which I'm intentionally not making public, I can clue you in to what those are. Email me.)

Anyway, I'm thinking about weighing all of the stuff I get rid of as I progress from room to room, keeping a log. I'm curious about how many stuff-pounds we can lose. :) If anyone wants to jump in on this project with me, you can send me the weight of your donated stuff-pounds, and we'll see how much baggage we can lose together.

One of the things I LOVED about China is the emphasis on minimalism. Artistically, this is what has always drawn me into Chinese art. Each line matters. Each line holds power, grace, and passion. A little is enough, if a little is pure. The beauty of the simple is found in Asian calligraphy, painting, and interior design. It was so much easier to focus in rooms like this. I'd love to integrate that concept into my life more deeply.

Ugh, I'm running out of time to write. But I wanted to throw this out there, just in case anyone feels like jumping in and doing this with me in their own homes. Maybe we can pray and cheer for each other.

Also, if you have done this before, what guiding principles have worked for you? How do you know what to keep and what to give away?

Gotta run. This old song comes to mind.

'Tis a gift to be simple,
'tis a gift to be free,
'tis a gift to come down
where we ought to be,
and when we find ourselves in the place just right,
'twill be in the valley of love and delight.
When true simplicity is gained
to bow and to bend we shan't be ashamed,
to turn, turn, will be our delight
till by turning, turning we come round right.

Shaker Hymn

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About This Blog

Welcome to our family’s adoption journey. As you read, you will see us stumble and take wrong paths. You will see our hopes surge and fall. You will see the gaps in our humanity, and how our God realigns us to His purposes over and again. We think the messiness of this process is important. Sometimes walking with God isn’t a neat, linear package that can be summarized in bullet points. More often, life ebbs and flows around our plans, while God works His sovereign wonders from it all. We are learning so much through this journey. And we are super excited about our new son. If you’d like to join us, we’d love to have you along for the ride.

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