Garbage

Downsize! It is Easy to Donate, Sell, or Garbage Your Stuff!

                Ed, my neighbor next door, actually entered my office last week. My office is tucked away in the basement of our house, and it is also the furnace room and the water heater room. No one usually gets into my office except me and our two cats. Occasionally, my wife yells from the office doorway but seldom enters as she says that you need a guide to get in and out my office. Ed was a bit speechless at the sight of my office. He wasn’t at a loss for words long. He said, “It looks like your office is a dumping ground for a lot of junk you could do without.” All I could say was that I had heard that observation before.                                                

I informed my neighbor that I had started a six-month project to de-clutter my office. “If you see any book that you would like there is a good chance it can be yours for the taking,” I said to him. Ed was not impressed as he said that his school days put him right off books just like church puts folks off God. I offered him a music stand as I have two, and even offered him one of my paintings as I have an office full of them. He said he had no need for a music stand and my paintings were either too religious or too abstract. He had come to the office with a paper he needed witnessing, and as soon as we did that he had to leave. It was the first time Ed experienced feelings of claustrophobia. My office is windowless and pretty much standing room only. He thought that his visit could give him nightmares. His worst nightmare would entail being locked in my office, with endless books that he had to read before he could get out of the room.                            

I have lived by the rule keep it as I may want it someday. Now I have to live by the rule either use and keep using it or get rid of it in one way or another. It is like my tangled thorny gooseberry bushes. They needed yearly pruning, which I neglected and now to get the ripe red gooseberries, I get scratched without mercy. My neighbor says that what you keep today you will suffer for tomorrow. He says just haul your books away to the dump. Ed has a vast collection of tools that he might want to use someday, but he says that is different than the books and junk I have. I told him his time to donate, sell or garbage his tools will come. Sometimes you cannot give away what others see as second-hand stuff they sure don’t want.

It seems we all are collectors of things and our collections tend to end up owning us. Jesus told this parable; “The kingdom of heaven is like a merchant looking for fine pearls. When he found one of great value, he went away and sold everything he had and bought it.” What we collect needs to have great value not just for today but also tomorrow. Owning faith in God through belief in Jesus is our perfect value for yesterday, today and tomorrow. 

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Raymond Maher
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