Wednesday, January 2, 2013


"I never get anything."

My audacious Kindergartner sat at our dining room table and whined out the words.

Never mind that Christmas had occurred less than 7 days before. Apparently his rear view mirror obscures the view.


I think about the Little House books. How Laura thought abundance was a shiny new penny in her stocking along with a stick of peppermint and an orange.

My son sits in the wake of Christmas excess and says he gets nothing.

(another sigh)

So, I do what any logical, self-respecting mother would do. I say...

"How about I take back all your toys and then you can really see what not having anything is like."

Probably not the best choice of words in the midst of my frustration, and yet it got his attention.
His eyes widened a little. 
Sat without words briefly.
And then wanted to know if I would really do it.

Good question.
Would I?
Would I really take away new toys in an effort to teach gratitude?
Would I sacrifice just-spent money on the altar of contentment?

In all honesty, I am not so sure I would. 
And yet, I am just frustrated enough by the accumulation of things that I just might.

I spend so much of my time - too much of my time -  managing stuff. 
It's overwhelming and defeating.
It's suffocating and disheartening.

I feel caught, almost trapped sometimes by the tension.
Desiring to give to my children and yet desiring thankfulness in my children.
I am beginning to think more is the enemy. At least more toys, more games, more stuff.

There is surely a freedom that comes with the thought of letting it all go. Giving it up. Selling it. Passing it on.

Stuff is it's own kind of prison. 
Multitude forms it's own kind of bondage.
And I am tired from the shackles.
And it's hard to think in my desire to give to my children, I have helped place chains on them in the prison of much.

Lord, forgive me. 

I don't have answers. Not complete ones. Not yet.
I do know this, however...

if my children are to suffer from much 
than I want it to be the suffering brought on by 
much love, 
much forgiveness, 
much compassion, 
much kindness, 
much gentleness, 
much contentment, 
much hope, 
much redemption, 
much peace-seeking, 
much sacrifice.

Christ has set us free to live a free life. So take your stand! 
Never again let anyone put a harness of slavery on you. 
Galatians 5:1 (The Message)

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