decluttering for the glory of God. 4 comments

My family and I leave for training for FOCUS in less than three weeks. We’ll be at training for five weeks, then we return home and have six weeks to fundraise our salary and pack up our house. With such crazy timelines, I’ve started packing now. The amount of stuff  that we have is amazing to me. I can’t possibly imagine taking everything we own with us as we bounce around the country as missionaries for the coming years. As such, I’ve taken to purging and decluttering our house.

The closer we get to moving, the more I realize that we really don’t need all this stuff. What is more is that this stuff can – and sometimes does – distract me from God. I get so caught up in all the things we have, the gizmos and gadgets, that I don’t pray as much as I could or should. Getting rid of things feels really, really good. Not only is it comforting to know that we’ll have less to move, less to haul around with us, but getting right of things is freeing.

If I can go through our basement or the various rooms in our home and sell something, trash it, or donate it, I’m in essence saying: that thing doesn’t own me. It doesn’t control me. That doesn’t mean that the things we are keeping own us or control us, but it is wonderful to have the ability to detach from all of our possessions. This cleaning and purging forces me to take stock of what is really important. I frequently ask myself, does this thing or that thing bring glory to God somehow or is it distracting me from Him? Would getting rid of this thing or that thing free me up somehow? Could I be a better wife, a better mother, a better daughter without this thing? Have I used it at all in the last six months?

I read an article recently about a woman who goes on pilgrimages around the world – and has done so for the last ten years. She takes with her only a backpack, relying on the generosity of others for food and shelter. As a wife and mother, I can hardly imagine living out of a backpack, but the notion of being so freed from possessions sounds luxurious. Instead of being bogged down by all the things we own, we can – and should – be free to worship God because of, rather than in spite of, our possessions.

What would it take for you to follow what Jesus tells the rich young man in Matthew’s gospel (19:16-22)? If Jesus tells you to sell all you have to follow Him, could you do it? Or, like the rich young man, would you leave sad for you had many possessions? Hard though it may be, I’d rather leave my possessions to follow Him because to follow Him is our true purpose in life.


Leave a Reply

4 thoughts on “decluttering for the glory of God.

  • Deanna Johnston

    Ann came through Dodge City in 2013 or 2014 I think and she stayed with some friends of ours. Speaking with her was absolutely fascinating, it’s hard for me to imagine living without all of my “stuff” 🙂 But I completely agree.. Decluttering reminds us what’s really important and to simply our lives 🙂 I’m in the process of doing that, mostly because I’m sick of having so much stuff messing up the house, but I see how it is also a spiritual exercise as well 🙂

    • Amanda @ worthy of Agape Post author

      It is hard to think about living without some of my stuff – especially if we aren’t back in Colorado for the foreseeable future, but it is freeing and so good to detach 🙂 Good luck in your decluttering efforts!

  • AnneMarie

    Decluttering is so freeing! When my husband and I graduated from college last May, we packed our apartment in our car to move to his new job several states away. While my husband is super detached, there were things that I had been holding onto-so it was a good opportunity to question, “Do I really need to keep this stack of papers that I have saved on my computer? Do I really need to keep this dress that I’ve been wearing for the past 8 years?” When I dumped a huge stack of papers in the recycling bin, and when we took an entire backseat’s worth of clothes, books, and household items to a local secondhand store, I felt so light! It was really freeing and wonderful. I’m actually planning to do another deep decluttering tomorrow, since baby should be coming out in about a month, and I know it will be easier to declutter before I’m busy with a newborn. I hope that decluttering and training goes well for you guys!

    • Amanda @ worthy of Agape Post author

      That is so awesome! It definitely feels light and is WAY easier to declutter before a baby comes 🙂