What has meaning in your life?
Wow, that’s a big question, isn’t it? Maybe the best way to define what has meaning in our lives is by figuring out what doesn’t. What are those things that you could easily do without? I’ll start…
Clothes: I can do without any piece of clothing that doesn’t fit me well, feel great on my skin, or make me look the very best I can. What I want in the way of clothing is quality stuff in classic styles that don’t make me wanna tug, pull, or re-position every minute of the day. At this point, I’m not about pulling up the edges of my top all day long, or worrying that my undergarments are showing through. I don’t want anything taking up space in my house or closet if it doesn’t fit right. Why do we hang onto this stuff?
Books: Here is an area where I have to be brutally honest with myself. I love books! If I have held on to a book for a while, it’s because it was at one time meaningful, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it is meaningful now. We all move through phases in our lives where our preferences change. That’s good because it means we are healthy, developing individuals, but it might also mean that we outgrow some things. Books are one of those things. If I’ve learned how to build better boundaries with people and I’m doing that on a daily basis, I don’t need that book that taught me how to do it anymore. I can now gratefully let go of it, and pass it on to others who are struggling in this area of life, allowing them to buy a good book on the subject for cents on the dollar compared to what I paid for it new.
Kitchen Cooking Utensils: The kitchen is one place where clutter hides in my house. This or that gets tucked away in a corner cupboard or junk drawer and there it stays for decades, unused. Why not donate some of those good duplicates or weird devices to the Salvation Army this year? That way, someone will get a quaint or useful Christmas gift, while you free up space for something with a little more meaning to you. Believe me, cleaning out the cupboards is a blessing no matter when you do it.
Food items: While we’re in the kitchen, let’s think about going through the pantry. I don’t know about you, but I have doubles of lots of foods. I love 2 for 1 sales, so I get two cans of beans, or two jars of sauce, thinking I will use that second one soon. I don’t. There it sits, getting closer to its expiration date with each passing day. Now is a great time to donate food items we don’t need. Just make sure not to donate anything that is already past it’s safe shelf life. Be kind. Don’t poison others.
Old socks, mittens, hand towels, and bedding: They can all be donated to your local Catholic Charities. You’ll feel good about making someone else will be warm this winter. Plus, you’ll finally have the space you need to store those items you really find meaningful.
Now is the time to hoe out closets, cupboards, attics, and cellars, and make space for all those meaningful objects that are going to come into our homes as a result of Christmas giving.
Making room for what’s meaningful in our lives is important, don’t you agree?
Most important of all is the decision to make room for Jesus this Christmas! Nothing is more meaningful than peace on earth extending to us and to the next generation, and nothing brings peace to this minimalist’s heart as much as her Savior—that One who knows me best and loves me most. With Him in the Hoose house, it’s always a merry Christmas!!
What’s next to go on the donation pile for you? What one item or event do you find most meaningful?