Proverbs 8:10-11 – Choose my teachings instead of silver. Choose knowledge rather than the finest gold.

Gratitude Day 815

There are days when things seem to collide in a good way. And it always makes me smile. I give a quick moment of gratitude for these moments and remember once again, I’m not living on an island. There is a Great God who is part of my life.

It happened to me one day this week.

While reading the daily Bible reading from my friend Pastor Mary Ann’s “Read Through the Bible in a Year” schedule, I came across this verse from Proverbs. The one at the beginning of the post:

Choose my teachings instead of silver. Choose knowledge rather than the finest gold.

  • Proverbs 8:10-11

These words made my heart and brain stop. Too often, we get caught up in wanting something. It’s something that we think we need, but really it is a want. Ever since we moved a few weeks ago, I have had plenty of things that I think I need, when really, they are a want. New carpet. (The house has probably the original Berber carpet.) Different counters in the kitchen and bathroom. A new pantry door. (I might have a few options in carts on various websites.) A new front door. (Hubby Rick and I agreed this IS something we are going to replace.) Should I mention the built-in cabinets that I think would look FANTASTIC in the lower level.

Yes, if all of these things were replaced, the house would look so much nicer. At least, in my opinion. Are they necessary? Well, it depends on who you talk to. The other half of the residents in our house is not convinced.  

Realistically, new carpet is me desiring something “silver.” New countertops? Totally yearn for some “gold” bling in the house. Those built ins? More storage that I’m want but should we have?

Yet, they would look so cool. Especially with new carpet right up next to them.

Really, Dianne? Is this all necessary?

Here’s the challenge of decluttering and downsizing. As much as I have gotten rid of, the desire for something different has not disappeared. Not. One. Bit.

This is why reminders that wisdom and knowledge are really more important than anything that I think would make our house look more how I would like it to look.

I just need to keep remembering this over and over and over.

Let me assure you that it is OK to purchase things again after you downsize and/or declutter. But the whole exercise is only an exercise unless we actively pause before simply purchasing more things and ask ourselves, “Why do I think this is necessary? Is it a want or a need.”

I agree. Once your needs are met, it is OK to fulfill some of your wants. We all yearn for some things that make us feel special. Important. Like we deserve it.

All of this is true and justifiable. Yet, if we simply give ourselves permission to refill our space with new things, what have we accomplished? Not as much as we would like. Especially when someday, 80% of your possessions will end up in a thrift store, donated by either you or a loved one, unless they went right to a dumpster.

This is not an encouragement to stop getting things that bring you joy or is something you really need. My question is whether or not the item is special enough to earn a place in your home. Or can you observe and enjoy the item from afar and be content with this? Only you can answer this question. It is an important one to answer before simply pulling out a card to buy something that looks really cool at the moment.

What am I suggesting? Be very intentional about what you bring into your home. Make sure it has a specific purpose and something you are very excited to have. If it doesn’t, then let it live it’s best life in someone else’s home.

You (and possibly other family members) will make these decisions. Just be clear about how you plan to keep your house from once again becoming run over with too much stuff. Otherwise, it just might be.

On Saturday’s, I often share little things that have been inspiring me this week. This is the first thing that has been pausing me to take note this week. Here are a few other things that have been meaningful to me.

This song. If your heart has been hurting, I especially encourage you to listen to it. On repeat.

This saying. Yep, it’s all true.

If you are looking for a couple additional resources about decluttering and downsizing, here are a couple options that I listened to and/or read. Sometimes, the word “minimalist” is used. I would not call myself a minimalist and do not expect to be as rigid about some things as some of these people are. If you yearn for minimalism, great! If you just want to have a more manageable amount of stuff, you go! If you aren’t into this concept, skip these suggestions.

Courtney Carver –

Joshua Becker –

The Minimal Mom –

The Simplicity Habit –

One more for the road: if you want to embrace Simple is Better but just am struggling with how to get started, pick one of these five spots and clean it out:

  • Your junk drawer
  • Your vehicle
  • Your medicine cabinet
  • Your coat closet
  • All of your shoes (or sweaters or something like this)

Start small. Make a little progress. Keep expectations realistic.

Take back parts of your life because you will eventually spend less time managing your stuff and more time doing the things that bring you joy and happiness.

Have a great weekend!

For the reminder that wisdom and knowledge are more important than possessions, I am grateful.

Blessings –

Holy God – Quiet my heart. Help me desire fewer materials things of this world and encourage me to pursue the things of the heart and soul that are more important: teachings, wisdom, knowledge. May these be the things that I treasure most. Amen.

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