Monday, March 3, 2008

More on Stuff

Many of us are living our lives forstuff. You know- our stuff. The ‘stuff’ that you see in the mall that you just can’t live without. The newest gadgets, toys, and plastic junk our kids just have to have.
We have garages for our stuff, sheds for our stuff, closets for our stuff, basements and attics for our stuff, storage rentals for our stuff and we go broke for our stuff. We spend hour after hour working for our stuff- often times putting our desire for stuff before relationships with friends and family. Because after all, we just can’t live without our stuff. We like it. We like it a LOT.

Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; a man’s life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions. Luke 12:15

Over the past year God has made it obvious to me that we needed to be in control of our stuff- so that we have more time to concentrate on Him. After all, if we are spending all of our time paying off our stuff then when do we find the time to serve? Let your character be free from the love of money, being content with what you have; for He Himself said, "I will never desert you, nor will I ever forsake you. Hebrews 13:5

A few changes we have made is taking gradual steps toward gaining control of our finances. Todd and I are currently taking Dave Ramsey’s class- Financial Peace University. If you haven’t read his book or taken this class then I highly suggest it. I have never been great at finances- I don’t have a lot of knowledge about investing. Truth be told- it bores me. I ‘thought’ I was frugal and careful with our money- but we have learned so much from this class. Do you know the #1 reason why most people are not financially secure and have debt? It’s our automobiles. The #1 reason people are in financial stress is because of the car they drive! 90 percent of people with marital problems list finances as the top reason for fighting with their spouse.

Another big reason to gain control over our stuff is the Earth. I know- we all take it for granted that it’ll be here tomorrow. We take for granted clean water and clean air. But there is reason to believe that this might not always be the case. Our stuff has to end up somewhere… and it’s the land fills. I ran across the video clip on my friend Wendi’s blog (thanks Wendi!) It’s definitely worth watching and will make you think. The link is Did you know that America holds 5% of the worlds population, yet we are using 30% of its resources- and that of course, is at the expense of others.

Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment. Command them to do good, to be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share. In this way they will lay up treasure for themselves as a firm foundation for the coming age, so that they may take hold of the life that is truly life. 1 Timothy 6:17-19

A few things we are doing at home to try to make a difference is really trying to limit our waste. We have now ‘gone cloth’. No, not all the way- I can’t quite get myself to give up toilet paper… but we have quit buying paper towels and napkins. We bought these cute little red cloth napkins (3 for $1 at the Dollar store shown in picture above) and it’s actually been fun. Kind of feels like you are eating at a fancy restaurant every night. :0) At first it took some getting used to- we were constantly reaching for the paper towels but now that we have been without them for a few weeks we hardly notice. Plus- it has saved on our grocery bill. Those things are expensive! Another thing we are trying this year is a garden- compost pile and all. The kids think it’s a blast and I know that if anything happens to actually grow in our garden I will be one proud individual. There is really so much more that we can all do. A great blog my friend Leslie introduced me to is This blog has lots of earth friendly ideas on doing your part.


Erica said...

Hi Amy, I was reading my friend's adoption blog today and clicked on your link. I work with children who have horror stories of their own and I am amazed and touched by your faith in God and the courage to follow through with Kaden. I just want to say thank you...for touching my life today and in a way challenging me to work on the "stuff" in my life. I look forward to seeing Kaden's adorable face in pictures with your beautiful family!

Wendi said...

Amy, thanks for passing along the link and adding such great content to its message. I checked out the blog you referenced (Walk Slowly, Live Wildly)and absolutely LOVE IT! Wow! I'll be checking in to that one more....thanks!

Amy said...

I hadn't checked your blog recently and was so glad I did tonight. Will be praying for your family and for sweet Kaden's adjustment to your family. The Lord can heal the largest of all hurts. We have seen it with our own son. God is so faithful and loving to come alongside those who have suffered.

Your post about the "stuff" hit home with me, I have recently been convicted about the amount of stuff we have in our home. There is a huge difference between the words 'want' and 'need', I am realizing more and more.