I am a minimalist. No, it’s not a weird religion. It’s a habit. I give away old stuff as fast as new stuff enters the scene—for the sheer sake of sanity. This family of twelve would be buried under a mound of cotton and denim waiting to be washed, dried, folded and put away, if I did not continually purge attire. In fact, some days it still feels like woven threads take over our house.
My friends clean out their closets and gift my kids (which I truly appreciate!!) with their hand-me-downs. I go shopping and see a “great deal”… toss new apparel in my basket when I only went for diapers. Thus, the process of bringing in and taking out is constant.
As I mentioned in my last post called Stinky Shirts, our family has been unusually busy this past semester as my husband ran for a political office. Our over stuffed schedule caused me to fall behind on the taking out part of the process. Therefore when I cleaned out our family closet this past weekend, I gathered 4 LARGE black trash bags full of clothes to donate.
FOUR TRASH BAGS.
What a great problem… an over abundance of something people in other countries do not even have!
I had to train myself to part with beloved items, though. And my declaration that I am a “minimalist” is more of a positive confession than a natural realization. For years I had the “What if this comes back in style?” rack and “I might have more girls born in this season” rack. Not to mention the “I paid too much money for these items to donate them” rack.
Then one day as I read scripture to my kids after breakfast and we came across Proverbs 25:15, “If you have found honey, eat only enough for you, lest you have your fill of it and vomit it”.
I had clothes gluttony. No I was not hiding behind closet doors stuffing sweaters in my mouth, but the principal of the scripture rang in my heart that morning. Honey is full of nutrients–it’s sweet and delicious, but too much of it is NOT A BLESSING…too much of anything IS NOT A BLESSING. Our over abundance of clothes caused extra unneeded washing, drying, folding etc. Clothes lurked on closet floors, under beds, stuffed in the strangest places and would later appear in the dirty clothesbasket whether clean or not.
THIS WAS NOT A BLESSING.
So the purging began and the whole family jumped in. We love airy closets, uncluttered rooms and clear space under beds, but we must work together to attain these goals. Today I took the girls shopping and as soon as we returned home, they each went to their clothes rack and picked out as many items to donate as I purchased for them. I hope and pray my kids are truly learning to be generous as well as minimalist. This routine is not only good character training, but it blesses our whole family and others not so fortunate.