Friday, August 24, 2012

Believing that Less Really is More


I remember the day we walked in.  We’d signed the paperwork, the keys were ours, and we opened the door to a new construction so new it had plastic covering the freshly laid carpets and nothing but dirt in the yard.

“Pretty good for a first house,” I said to my mother-in-law.

“Pretty good for a third house, I’d say.”

I smiled but was honestly thinking that she was off her rocker. 

Had she seen the houses people live in now-a-days?  Times are changing.

My husband and I, along with our family and friends, started building sweat equity.  We painted the walls and transformed empty space into a lived in home.  At least the upper level.

Compared to our apartment, it felt grand.

After years of waiting and negative pregnancy tests, a second line finally appeared.  We emptied the second room of boxes and in its place put a crib and changing table and a whole lot of baby gear for a tiny little person.  A person we couldn’t wait to hold.

Grace arrived and construction on the lower level began.  Mostly completed by my hubby and loved ones, the space was incredible and we finished with no mounted debt.  Two adults and a tiny person made our house feel like a castle…and we rested.

Eventually God blessed us with baby number two and just a little over a year ago girl number three.  As our hearts burst at the seams with love it seemed that our house was beginning to burst at the seams with space. 

And the verbage began. “In our next house I’d like…” “We could aim to move in ___ years ….”

Both of us began dreaming of the bigger and seemingly better.  And we rested in our plans.

And then new things happened.  Our World Vision child became self sufficient and we cried at the good-bye, surprised even ourselves by how much we’d loved her.  (I’ll have to introduce you all to our new little Nayely sometime.  What a doll!)  We took some small trips as a family that still stretched the family budget and we cherished the opportunity.  We started taking advantage of the walk from our house to the nearby school, pool, and library, now that our kids are old enough to enjoy them.

And God started sending me new messages.

 

New conversations started.


This month marks 10 years in our home.  If we stay here we can have it completely paid off when we are fifty.  With the addition of one wall down stairs each girl could have her own room and a few somewhat miniscule style changes could change my little annoyances.

Is bigger really better? God challenged me.

And I’m certain the answer is no.

There is nothing wrong with square footage and I’m not saying we will for sure never move, but I am saying that He has worked a revelation in my heart.

On a small scale, our location is unbeatable and more space really equates to more to clean, which I can’t claim to love.  But, on a much bigger scale, the concept of paying the house off young means more opportunity down the road for travel and charitable giving.  It means opportunities with the kids that would be impossible with a larger house payment and the opportunity to instill in them the joy and value of humble living. It means thinking less about ourselves and more for others.  And, in the process, we are actually happier.

I don’t think when my kids graduate they will look back and say, “I really wish we had a 3 stall garage” or “My life would’ve been so much more if only I’d have had a walk in closet.”  They will remember road trips and dance and games of Qwirkle around the dining room table.  They’ll smile about  indoor picnics on family movie night and reading mail from Nayely in the kitchen and family prayers at bedtime and daily shared meals

 

Because even cheesy potatoes bring great happiness. J  {Grace’s teacher sent me this picture and I couldn’t stop laughing.}
 
They will remember what was done in the living quarters they had…not how much of it was there.

So God has given us new rest. 

Ironically, this plan gives me more excitement than the idea of moving.  We will build memories rather than space.  We’ll stand on His foundation rather than that built by man. And we will appreciate this house which holds memory of all that He has given us and all that He wants us to give.

For the first time, I wholeheartedly believe that less really is more.


Shared at She Reads Truth, The Better Mom, Titus 2sday, Raising Homemakers, WLWW

6 comments:

  1. I love, love, love this. :) Hooray for making memories and resting in God's provision! My parents have lived in the same house since I was 10, and it is small and awkward in places--but I love it, and I love going back there and being with them in it. So many memories, so much love. I almost couldn't imagine them being anywhere else (and I hope they plan to stay, too!). Wishing you many more happy years in your home and growing your family! :)

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  2. What an amazing life journey you've on! I've waited a while too for this second pregnancy and am so thankful that God saw it fit to say yes to my prayer.

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  3. saw you on the SheReadsTruth link up.
    as someone living overseas, sharing Dad's truth with a lost people, and living on donations i so, so appreciate your heart!
    thank you for sharing!

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  4. AMEN!!! I found you through she reads truth. Come meet me and my crew at www.make-something-beautiful.com

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  5. ...then there are those of us who have those "next house " conversations not because of discontent but because military life means there will be a move!

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    1. I admire you for answering this call and moving really for the sake of all of us. That cannot be easy. I'm so thankful to you and your family for the sacrifices you make for our freedom. God bless you!!!

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