Friday, April 4, 2014

Stuff (2009), Stuff (2012) and More Stuff

From our drive, looking over the pasture

Here's a blog I wrote in 2012. I was looking for something else and came across this picture of smoke from a wildfire half a mile from our home. It had made its way quickly across several miles, and was much too close for my comfort. Last night I watched video taken at Denton, Texas, fifty nice safe miles from my home. Safe, because we did not get any of the hail (and - unfortunately - none of the torrential rain) that damaged cars and buildings in Denton. Our "Stuff" was safe.

We've also been "downsizing." I've given away lots of clothing I haven't worn along with dishes we aren't using. I've gotten rid of two things when one would do quite nicely. I've much, much more to do, basically because (as Second Daughter put it) I have an emotional attachment to most of the stuff in our home. That hasn't changed much since 2012, or 2009:

Three years ago, in the fall of 2009, I was reading about fires in California. I wrote a blog about it then. Today, as I was cleaning my stuff, it came to mind.  According to T. J. Lynch, a victim of California’s Station fire:
"It's pretty surreal, pretty humbling, how your life is represented in these objects that you collect and then you have to whittle them down," he said, describing the difficulty of choosing what to bring with them.
We’ve seen such smoke, a half a mile from our home. Fortunately the wind was not in our direction, and a great many awesome firefighters ended its fury. We had to consider how to move our cattle, gather dogs, wonder about chickens – and that’s just living things, not the objects we had collected over the years, the ‘stuff’ that makes up our lives.

Rachel took some stuff from her father’s tent when Jacob fled with his family. She must have felt it was worth it to take them, then sit upon them to hide her theft.

Whereas thou hast searched all my stuff, what hast thou found of all thy household stuff? set it here before my brethren and thy brethren, that they may judge betwixt us both. (Genesis 31:37 KJV)

Joseph told his brothers not to be concerned about their own stuff – he had enough in Egypt to take care of all of them.

Also regard not your stuff; for the good of all the land of Egypt is yours. (Genesis 45:20 KJV)

Moses found out it was possible to have too much stuff!

For the stuff they had was sufficient for all the work to make it, and too much. (Exodus 36:7 KJV)

Look around – what stuff do we need? What stuff do we want – and why? Is the stuff important to us, or to our children? Why have we accumulated this stuff? Where will it eventually go? Why do we need it now? What would we take in case of fire? Why would we choose that? Because it would be expensive to replace? Because of the memories it invokes?

Christ speaks of a day when we need to abandon our stuff:

In that day, he which shall be upon the housetop, and his stuff in the house, let him not come down to take it away: and he that is in the field, let him likewise not return back. (Luke 17:31 KJV)

Do we have the wrong stuff?

Israel hath sinned, and they have also transgressed my covenant which I commanded them: for they have even taken of the accursed thing, and have also stolen, and dissembled also, and they have put it even among their own stuff. (Joshua 7:11 KJV)

Let’s take inventory of our stuff. Appreciate that which we’ve accumulated, but determine if we’ve taken of the accursed thing and put them among our own stuff. Let’s clear them out and determine what stuff is worth rescuing, and what is not.

1 comment:

  1. I hate stuff. We bought my mom and dad's house and they left almost everything and wanted us to babysit it. It was horrible.


Thank you for taking time to read and comment on the blog. Comments should take into consideration this verse: Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things. (Philippians 4:8 KJV)