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Minimalism from a Biblical Point of View —

Biblical Minimalism© is "a complete, whole-person release of anything unlike Jesus, a letting go of everything that hinders us from following Him wholeheartedly and single-mindedly, and a relinquishing of all that brings us under bondage to this earthly, very temporary life." Cheryl E. Smith

Monday, June 11, 2018

Minimizing Physical Possessions

How is it going with The P.O.W.E.R. Tool©?  Have you picked it up yet?  Are you using it?  If you missed the last post and wonder what this is all about, you can download your own FREE P.O.W.E.R. Tool© by clicking HERE.  Several of you have joined me on my journey, and I cannot begin to say how grateful I am to have you on board.  All are welcome!  If you decide to join in, please let me know by emailing me privately or commenting here on the blog.  And, remember, even if you don't need to minimize excess pounds, the tenets of The P.O.W.E.R. Tool© will lead you closer to Jesus and to better physical health, too!

There are two parts to the Physical Slice of the Whole-Person Pie©.


We have talked in-depth in this post and this post and this post about minimizing the seven categories that make up the Physical Slice.
We've covered addictions, habits, obesity, our hands and feet, what we see, what we hear, and what we speak. 

Now, we will move forward to the 2nd part of the Physical Slice of the pie—the minimizing of our physical possessions.  

At first glance, how do things look in this area for you?  Do you feel suffocated and overwhelmed by stuff?  Is your home cluttered?  Do you have a hard time finding things?  Do you continually feel that you need a bigger house?  Are you faced with too many product choices when cooking a meal, getting dressed, or doing household chores?  If you answered yes to any or all of these questions, chances your physical possessions exceed what you actually need.  When it all boils down, we, as human beings, need very little. 

As we go through the writing of this new blog, my main goal is to point you only to Jesus Christ.  He is the Word of God that became flesh and lived in a human body for 33 1/2 years so that we could see who God is, how He thinks, and the way He wants us to live our lives.  How blessed we are that four men named Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John took the time and effort necessary to write His precious spoken words down for us!  How grateful we should be to Him and the many who have sacrificed through the years to make sure our Bibles were preserved and passed down to us!  How sad that we pick them up and read and study them so infrequently! 

Every answer to every problem of life can be solved in the Word of God.  It was written over the span of approximately 1500-1550 years (from around 1450 B.C. to around 95 A.D.) through the Holy Spirit inspiring around 40 different authors.  Though the last book of the Bible was inspired and written down over 1920 years ago, it is every bit as relevant and up-to-date and applicable to our daily lives as it was the moment dear Saint John penned the final words of the book of Revelation in 95 A.D.

As we work through the process of minimizing our lives and trying to bring them into alignment with the will of God, His Word is our roadmap to Heaven and our instruction manual on how to live our lives on earth.  I am continually amazed at Its practicality and the way It can be applied to every, single circumstance of our lives no matter how much time has elapsed since it was written.  As followers of Jesus Christ, we are so blessed to have the Word of God in front of us and the Spirit of God within us.  The Word and the Spirit always agree, and if we continually yield in obedience to the guidance of the Word and Spirit of God, we will live a successful Christian life and reach our goal of Heaven when we leave this earth.

When I first began to write the book, called "Biblical Minimalism," I dove deep into God's Word because I truly have nothing of eternal value to offer of my own.  I only want to operate on the premise of the eternal, unchanging Word of God and to figure out what its precepts look like lived out in a functional way.  I began to research what the Bible says about the subject of physical possessions, and I paid special attention to the red letters in verses like these—

"And He said unto them, Take heed, and beware of covetousness: for a man's life consisteth not in the abundance of the things which he possesseth."  Luke 12:15

"Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal:  but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: for where your treasure is, there will your heart be also."  Matthew 6:19-21

"Sell your possessions and give to the poor. Provide purses for yourselves that will not wear out, a treasure in heaven that will never fail, where no thief comes near and no moth destroys."  Luke 12:33 (NIV)

"And, behold, one came and said unto him, 'Good Master, what good thing shall I do, that I may have eternal life?'  And He said unto him, 'Why callest thou Me good? There is none good but one, that is, God: but if thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments.'  He saith unto him, 'Which?' Jesus said, 'Thou shalt do no murder, thou shalt not commit adultery, thou shalt not steal, thou shalt not bear false witness, honor thy father and thy mother, and thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.'  The young man saith unto Him, 'All these things have I kept from my youth up: what lack I yet?'  Jesus said unto him, 'If thou wilt be perfect, go and sell that thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come and follow Me.'  But when the young man heard that saying, he went away sorrowful: for he had great possessions."  Matthew 19:16-22

I also looked closely at the way Jesus lived His life.  Because, with every fiber of my being, I SO long to be and live like He did!  I have felt so drawn to a simple, eternity-focused life, and for a long time, I didn't understand why.  One day, it hit me that it is HIM—I feel so compellingly called to follow Him and emulate His walk as closely as I possibly can. 

Jesus was unencumbered.  He was fully available in each moment.  He was completely present in every circumstance.  He traveled light.  He didn't hoard.  He had only what He needed at all times.  He shared everything He had.  He gave until His dying breath. 

Remember, everything springs from the spiritual, including what motivates us to have so much stuff in the first place.

I hope you will continue to follow along as we explore these motivations and lots more about releasing our excess physical possessions!  God bless you on your minimizing journey!

4 comments:

  1. I think the biggest problem I face with "stuff" is the feeling that by getting rid of something, I am rejecting the relationship of the giver of that item. I know that isn't the case, but with my mother-in-law's death fresh on my mind, I feel like getting rid of her trinkets and not bringing them into my home is kind of like rejecting her. Make sense?

    I printed out the POWER tool, but I haven't started using it yet. Just getting myself back into the groove from my trip has been a challenge for me.

    Blessings,
    Patti

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    1. Yes, it sure makes sense, and I can surely relate to all you said. I lost my dear Dad 18 years ago, and my Mom 6 years ago, and I still, to this day, have a most difficult time turning loose of things they owned, bought for me, or that remind me of them. It is SO hard. I am so sorry for your deep loss, my friend. May God bless and comfort your dear hearts during this sad, difficult time.

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  2. Cheryl, when we were preparing for our move to Arizona we got rid of so much stuff! Early in our marriage we moved in with Tim's parents which was the house he grew up in. There were 60+ years of stuff to go through and it was hard choosing what to keep and what to give away. We donated many things to the thrift store and I put a note on the box to upwrap the items carefully because they were breakable. Even now I keep thinking we might have donated something valuable but I know that storing treasures here on earth is wrong.

    Another difficult thing we did was we left many items at our old house which was very devastating for us. We just didn't have enough room in the moving PODS or trailer. I still have a hard time with that but God provided us with replacement items we needed and not items we wanted. It's taken me a long time to learn the difference between want and need. Thank you Cheryl for this post.

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    1. My, you have really gone through so much, my friend. God has surely taken you through some places that have forced you to minimize. I know what you mean about still wondering about things...we once gave something away, and later I regretted it so much. We went back to the thrift store later to buy it back, and it was gone. It belonged to my Mom, so it was hard. But, God is teaching me many things about letting go. I have so much to share on this subject and look forward to doing that, if God wills. I am SO grateful for your support and for all you shared here. God bless you!

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