That's A Lot of Toys
A new friend and her kiddos came over to play this week. I gave her a tour of our home, and upon seeing the playroom, she said, "That's a lot of toys." This new friend doesn't read my blog, at least not yet, but just in case she starts, I want to be clear that she did not offend me. More and more, I appreciate people who [nicely] speak their mind. I'd rather know what you think than wonder.
Her comment has caused some good evaluation on my part. For those of you who know me well, you know that I have been on a simplifying kick this past year. I have given away and sold countless possessions from my closet, my kitchen and my bookshelf. And my kids have probably given away or sold about half of their toys. And still we have a lot.
So, have I failed in my simplifying efforts? I don't think so. First of all, I am still in process as is the rest of our family. We have made a lot of progress this year. And secondly, I can encourage my children to live with less stuff, but I can't force them to do it. I can put systems in place to help them to clean things out, sure, but ultimately, they have to decide for themselves how to manage their stuff. We have a good dialogue going about possessions right now, I think, and I am hoping that we'll all grow as a result. My children often hear, "Well, if you are tired of cleaning it up, you are welcome to give it away." And sometimes they opt to do that.
Amelia finally parted with four toys that she outgrew a while ago. The trick for her was meeting some kids to pass them along to. She's very relational and found joy in giving to new friends.
The bottom line, though, is that something is still bugging me, and I haven't resolved it yet. My new friend is a sincere Christian (as I am), and her surprise at the quantity of our possessions was. . .convicting? Is that what I am feeling?
I know that I don't have to please her, but is God using my sister in Christ to bring to light an issue on which I need to work? Even though I/we have made significant progress in reducing the number of possessions we have, are we called to do more? Are we living in excess?
Let the wrestling begin.