Have you ever watched those programs about hoarding where people collect so much stuff they barely have paths to get through their houses?
At one time I might have commented, “Surely people don’t live like that!” But since then, I’ve seen the reality up close. The first time, it was an elderly client who received personal care and light housekeeping services from the agency I worked for. Later, my husband and I cleaned out my parents’ home. They had amassed so much stuff, they really did only have a pathway to get through. I lost count of all the unopened sheet and pillowcase sets we found, not to mention cases of paper towels and enough 3-pound cans of coffee to last for several years!
Perhaps this need to collect and save things evolved from their early childhood during the 1930’s Great Depression. But whatever caused them to hoard, it eventually became a health hazard. Because of their age-related problems and all the stuff, they could no longer clean their house properly. All through the kitchen we found mouse droppings and packages of expired food which never got thrown out. The dust in other rooms had become almost toxic to breathe. Each time we returned from a cleaning trip, I ended up with an upper respiratory problem.
Thankfully, my husband and I have moved several times in our lifetime, which motivated us to sort through our possessions. We’ve tossed, sold and given away more than we’ve kept. And my daughters think it’s time to weed out stuff again so they don’t have to do it when we die. LOL!
They’re right too. True security doesn’t come from having stuff. It comes from knowing Jesus.
Father, help me to cut the physical and spiritual clutter in my life – to clear out those unnecessary things which only draw my attention away from you. Amen.