abundance – noun \ə-ˈbən-dən(t)s\ – noun
: a large amount of something
: affluence, wealth
“Abundance is the process of letting go; that which is empty can receive.” ~ attributed to Bryant H. McGill
I still have too much stuff.
Trash Bags R Us.
It’s the easiest way to clean and declutter. Of course, not all bags are destined for the garbage. I’ve set some aside for Goodwill. And I’ve labeled some Two Men and a Truck boxes for a church-wide garage sale.
How many sets of dishes do two people (with occasional guests) need anyway? How many outfits does one person need? Do I really need all these needlework pieces created 180 supermoons ago? And chickens. Where did I get this chicken obsession? Oh yeah. Now I remember. It all started when I visited a friend who had them. Then I went crazy at Cracker Barrel.
I’ve even been looking at tiny homes. Maybe we could hide one at the edge of a hidden lake. As long as I didn’t have to climb up to and down from a loft bed. But where would I put my books? (These are kind of nice, too, but I’m distracted again.)
I’ve even been eyeing this Boyd’s Charming Angel Collection, all eight of them that my son gifted me. Maybe I could sell these sweet girls to help fund my December trip to Haiti.
(On second thought, I just looked them over to see who was who. They include Aurora, the guardian angel of dreams; Alessandra, the guardian angel of hope; and–get this–Della Robia, the guardian angel of abundance. So maybe not.)
But really, who needs abundant collections of trinkets when God is collecting an abundance of tears?
Most of the time I’m grateful for my abundance, content in this place God’s placed me.
Some of the time I feel guilty over my over-abundance because I’ve seen poverty–and realize I’m the one who is poor.
Some of the time I’m discontented because of my perceived lack of abundance.
I think I want more stuff. Stuff I don’t need on a planet peppered with so many needs.
More and more of the time, my stuff smothers me. Its power paralyzes me with its demands, holds me hostage at dust point. It taunts me at the keyboard, assaults me with reminders to care for it, and I end up caring for nothing while I sit frozen in Facebook or tied to Twitter or crushed in Candy.
I need to let more stuff go so I can let more words loose.
Because people are crying and dying.
The abundance of pain and evil in this world overwhelms me.
But abundance does not insulate us.
So I pray that out of the abundance of drivel I’m able to spill on this screen at least one well-chosen syllable or phrase might hit its mark. Not as a bullet of death but as an arrow of hope. That somehow I can be a stretcher-bearer, a friend with a word-woven mat. And sometimes I can even touch a hand here or stroke a cheek there.
And so I fill a bag here and a box there.
But I still have too much stuff.
What would be the hardest thing for you to give up if you chose to downsize?
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In the stillness,