Now I don’t want to mislead you, we are not back in the tiny house, nor any kind of tiny house. That is, our house might be considered small if you live in an average American house of nearly 2700 square feet. We come in somewhere around 1300 square feet, but it is not tiny.
Anyway, we are still thinking about that tiny house future, and bit by bit, boxes of stuff leave our house most every week. And though there are tons of stuff to get rid of yet, I am finding it easier and easier to see things go.
So, if you were me, what would you hang onto?
Jim put all of our pictures into electronic format, sending copies of the photos that might matter to each of our children. Pictures are one thing most people want to hang on to; they are the evidence and elements that tie us to our past and tell us how we became who we are.
At Christmas, my husband pulled together the hard copies of some of our photos that included one of my sisters and her family and a vacation that we shared after her husband died. I had no idea how much they might mean to her, until she told me. They were pictures of happy moments, smiling and excited faces and reminded her of the great times they had shared. The end of someone’s life is usually painful and sometimes those memories of such a hard time effect a memory loss of the good times. Those photos brought those memories back.
This last weekend Jim participated in the memorial service of a dear family friend, and before the service began, we watched a collection of photos on the big screen of our friend Paul, a father and grandfather, retell his life. A New Jersey turned Pennsylvania boy, a farm kid turned basketball player, and gifted musician turned farmer again turned into man of God who left specific instructions for his funeral, that God be glorified and the gospel shared. And I am happy to say it was all that.
In case you hung in here, the point I want to make is this, the fewer things we hang onto, the happier we will be. One day we will walk out of this house and into a smaller one. I know the thumb drive with all those photos will go with us. I know, or at least I think I know, that my old Thompson Chain Reference Bible will go with me. The covers are glued on, the pages all marked up, but I still feel an at-homeness when I open it up, when I search for words and their usages in the back. When I squint my eyes to read all those notes I inked onto the pages.
It’s like at night before I go to bed, I read my Chronological Bible passage for the day. Last night, it was with that same sense of at-homeness as when I read my old Bible. I know God is waiting for me there, and IF I listen closely enough, slowly enough, I will hear Him speaking to me through the written word. I say slowly enough because we, or at least I, am tempted to read to get it done, so there. Instead of reading it to hear, to pay attention to why God laid that passage in my path.
And that’s a real important thing to take into your house, whether it is tiny or not.
Carol Brennan King