Stuff – how much do we need?

Her headstone is black and unassuming, not what I expected. In life she prized beauty; on my editing trips she’d treat me to haircuts, pedicures, and fabulous new clothes. Her homes exuded warmth and style – and a bit of glitz. But now her space is just a small plot, next to her husband, in-laws, and son.

I know she’s not confined to earth, for she’s dancing in her Father’s mansions, loving Beauty in his fullest form. But as I looked at her grave, I thought about her gorgeous possessions (which I hasten to add, she shared so generously with me and many), now dispersed or sold.

DSCN2549We all get reduced to a grave or an urn in the end, so how much stuff do we need? We buy stuff; we pack it; we move it from one room to the next; we give it away; we disregard it; we treasure it. We can spend much of our energy worrying about our stuff or arranging for it to be cleaned, fixed, or disposed.

I ponder Jesus’ admonition not to store up treasures on earth, where moths and rust will destroy and thieves will break in and steal, but to store up treasures in heaven (Matthew 6:19–21). I think about how through giving and relentless evangelism my beautiful author stored up more treasures in heaven than on earth, which is mind-boggling considering her financial worth. I look at my stuff: my purchases while in the States, schlepped back in bulging suitcases; my favorite books and clothes, some dog-eared and worn; the photos and heirlooms I would grab in a fire. And I ask myself, where am I storing up my treasures?

How much stuff do you need?

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