decrease

It’s been about two weeks since I’ve done any shopping of any kind. We’re low on funds after our move and having to wait until next month before we see any significant increase in our bank account. I’ve gotten very creative with food stored in our pantry and freezer, and Mike’s thinking about growing his hair long again since he’s been so long without a haircut. I was remarking to Jenny the other afternoon that I almost don’t even feel human because I haven’t been shopping.

Isn’t this AWFUL?

I didn’t know that the craving was so strong inside of me.

And yet, I was thinking about how staying out of the stores has weakened my desire to consume, consume, consume. We don’t have cable (or even a good antenna), so I haven’t been harangued by commercials who are trying to make feel incomplete without their product; I haven’t been in a store to check out their sales or pick up that little item that I always forget to buy and always “need”; I honestly can’t think of that little list that’s usually in the back of my mind of things that I “need” for myself, or for the apartment, or for Mike. My needs are met.

The Lord is such a Provider. The most I want right now that isn’t a necessity might be a good glass of wine and perhaps a movie, and because He is amazing and the church is amazing, I’m walking to the next apartment building over to the Tinksters, where they have invited us to partake of just that.

I’d never really thought of myself as a “stuff” person. I’m not a packrat; I like to throw things away, give away clothes, and I don’t spend that much time shopping when I have the money to do it. But maybe most Americans are “stuff” people without even realizing it, no matter how neo-hippie, progressive, or bohemian, they consider themselves to be. Our lives could be so much simpler if we let them be.

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6 Responses to decrease

  1. Jeremy Uriz says:

    You can count the people who will voluntarily live the way you suggest on your fingers and toes.

    The rest of us are placed in that position, such as yourself.

  2. J. Samuel Thomas says:

    “Our lives could be so much simpler if we let them be”.

    Let.

    There’s something about that word that is always taken for granted.

    “Allow”.

    Sounds kind of like “Hallowed”.

    Coincidence?

    Probably, but a good play on words nonetheless.

  3. J. Samuel Thomas says:

    Allowed:

    [Middle English allouen, to approve, permit, from Old French alouer, from Latin allaudre, to praise (ad-, intensive pref.; see ad- + laudre, to praise; see laud), and from Medieval Latin allocre, to assign; see allocate.]

    Close but not quite!

  4. Anonymous says:

    Blaise Pascal once said something along the lines of this: All human beings are taught to seek belongings not because it makes us happy, because it doesn’t, but because the desire for things distracts us from looking into our own souls.

    I wish I could find the quote. He said it much better.

    -Jonathan

  5. Jasmin says:

    Yay Johnny for breaking out a word’s etymology! I love looking at words that way. I think the challenge for me will be to see if I can live simply when we are back on our feet again…but I have the power to allow that right? So, here’s to allowing!

    Yay for Jonathan for breaking out Pascal! It’s okay, I’m sure you paraphrased him fine.

  6. Philip says:

    Pascal said a lot about the role of vanity and distraction in human life. Read Section II of the Pensees; the quote’s probably in there, but most likely in the section with fragment 139 and following.

    For those who don’t feel like reading the whole thing, this might be a decent summary:

    As men are not able to fight against death, misery, ignorance, they have taken it into their heads, in order to be happy, not to think of them at all. – fragment 168

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