2 Kings 11:1-4, 9-18, 20
Jesus said to his disciples, "Do not store up for yourselves treaasures on earth, where moth and decay destroys, and thieves break in and steal. But store up treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor decay destroy, nor thieves break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there also will your heart be." (Matthew 6:19-21)
Sometimes I’m jealous of my daughter Julie’s vocation. I know, "the grass is always greener", but when I consider her vow of poverty, it’s very attractive to me. Material possessions don’t get in the way for her. She isn’t storing up any earthly treasures, only heavenly ones! I look around my house, and it’s hard to even know where to begin to simplify. So many special books, kids toys, knick-knacks (Hummels and the like), quilt tops from great-grandma’s, movies, sporting equipment, and the list goes on and on. I thought my kids would want some of this stuff, but now I don’t think that’s the case.
Not only do we own a bunch of stuff, but we have to take care of it! Getting close to 60, it’s only right that I should want to start getting rid of things. Besides being emotionally attached to some of it, I want to sell it at a decent price, but with today’s market, that’s probably not going to happen. Jim hasn’t had a paycheck for two months, so it’s tempting to look at this as an opportunity to make a little money and help out. But considering the time and effort it will take to sell it, I find myself praying about simply giving it all away.
Maybe the quilt tops could go to the church group that makes quilts for the bazaar each year or to a historical society; maybe the books could go to different schools for their libraries; and maybe some of the toys could go to a homeless shelter? Please pray with me that I figure out what the Lord wants me to do and then do it! I love the idea I heard somewhere of "holding all things loosely." Lord, help me hold on to the most important things – my faith and relationships – and be willing to let go of the rest, knowing that You will "provide for all of our needs according to your riches in glory." (Philippians 4:19)
Janice Carleton and her husband Jim live in Portland, Oregon and partner with Passionist Fr. Cedric Pisegna in Fr. Cedric Ministries. Janice also leads women’s retreats. She is the mother of 4 grown children and grandmother of 6. Visit Janice’s website at http://www.jcarleton.com/ or email her at mailto:janice@frcedric/org