Saturday, July 26, 2008

Simplify

This is a picture of our home in the repair shop this past spring. Looks small, doesn't it? It's a funny feeling to put your "home" in the garage. We were in the shop for 2 weeks while parts were being ordered and work done on the rig, and the good folks at All Seasons let us live there on site. We had to put in the slides if they were going to use the sides and back of the garage, or disconnect our water hose if they needed the spigot. 

This leads me to some thoughts on simplicity. This virtue became a strong desire of mine in the last years of living in our big, 4 bedroom house. We took in a few relatives, a few mission volunteers, and a few homeless people over the years. (Not all at once!) That was God's will for us those first years of our marriage. When Keith's job came to an end we decided to launch out into the full-time RVer lifestyle. It was difficult but very freeing to dispose of the vast majority of our belongings in order to move into our 5th wheel (a gift from God!) We tried to figure out the minimum of what we needed and that would not violate the weight restrictions of our trailer. Being complete amateurs at RVing, it was all a challenge. 

The first time we set out on the road with Keith driving BigTruk and pulling the 5th wheel, me driving the Focus behind him, my startling thought was, "All my earthly possessions are traveling down the highway!" I have found I do not miss anything I sold or gave away nearly 4 years ago. What I have left is important to me but is not anything I couldn't live without. Every time we set out for a new location I find myself going through the trailer and picking out more things to give or throw away, especially if I haven't used it. Our rule is that if we get something new we have to get rid of something else. I got a new, pretty South Dakota t-shirt so I put an old t-shirt in the give-away pile. We got a new blanket for the bed, with bears all over it, so I parted with other blankets I no longer needed. And so on. Not only does that keep our weight down for traveling, but it also keeps us from becoming attached to "things". Our earthly stuff is all a gift from God, but is never to be a substitute for seeking first His Kingdom. I'll be putting down more of my thoughts on simplicity in my next post.

1 comment:

Real-life Family said...

Wow, what an inspiring post! Adam and I are both "packrats" by nature, and we have to work hard at getting rid of stuff. It's hard to part with things, because we always think they might come in handy for something (someday) or that it's good to have a backup item in case the new one breaks...the excuses for keeping "junk" are endless! Hearing about your experience is wonderful food for thought. The Lord does indeed provide all that we need, and it truly does feel good to get rid of things that have been taking up space!