Do we ever think about how wasteful we really are? By saying we, I am talking about Americans.
In this great country, so many people are living wasteful lives, including myself.
Yes, I try not to be wasteful….I clean out my closet and donate to Goodwill. Yet, I seem to replace everything I get rid of with new things. I buy many things for myself that I really do not need. And then, when an opportunity comes to do something totally selfless, it seems that I can’t afford it. Actually, I should say that I do not want to afford it, most of the time.
Even food is wasted, not just in my home, but in yours too! That is one of the first things that my dad said is wife noticed about America – there is so much food! Of course, look around and you will see that American’s over consumption of food is evident in the waistline of the majority of people around you.
Money is definitely wasted. Did I really need a cashmere sweater I recently splurged on? Or the 2 pairs of shoes I bought? The money I spent on those items could have been used to help someone else. It could have been used to better the life of someone else.
I’m not saying its wrong to splurge every now and then. But I feel like most of us have so many “things” in our life to the point that having new and better “things” consume us. There was a time in my life where I was more aware of how much waste I was creating in my life. I’ve slipped a little…well, a lot.
I realize this isn’t an important issue for most people, but this is something that is very important to me. Its actually something that I challenged myself a while ago to fight against. (for myself).
Don’t we all want a better world for our children? Don’t we all want to say that we have made an impact in someone elses life? When I think about the past 2 years in Iowa City, I am ashamed to say that I feel like I have made NO mark whatsoever. I have done absolutely nothing , in my opinion, but be concerned about myself.
I really want to change that. When I am gone, I want my children and grandchildren to see the impression that I have left behind. And, I want that impression to be one of kindness, love, generosity, and selflessness.
So, maybe you don’t see the connection, but to me, living a simple life is what I feel I NEED to do to be able to give to others. I actually feel bogged down, suffocated, and burdened when I feel waste began to accumulate in my life.
Lately, the waste I have brought into my life has been tangible and intangible. And, I’ve invited it in without hesitation.
Let me say that I am a thinker. I’ve actually spent a couple of weeks thinking about this. That’s just how I work. I have to let my thoughts marinate for a while (: I am also a serious prayer. I believe in the POWER of prayer. So, I’ve prayed and waited.
And what God revealed to me today is a picture of myself that is not pretty. In fact, its ugly – horrible, even.
I have felt for a long time that God has really called me to live simply. I have felt that God has given me a spirit for giving and encouragement, and sometimes that giving involves giving financially to others.
I really can’t do this if I am living wastefully and carelessly.
And, you know, every time I think that I am living quite simply, God shows me ways I can cut back even more. Minimize to maximize. Its definitely very hard, but I believe that is what I am supposed to do.
And for someone like me, who really enjoys the finer things in life, its quite hard to do and very easy to fall off track.
But I am really challenging myself to stay on the tracks, to walk down this road and see where it leads me one day. I want Isabela to really see this world that we live in and be grateful for it. I want her to respect our earth and see the value in living fruitfully. I want her to take care of her body and to respect it. I want her to be happy to give. I want her to see pain and suffering and to know compassion. I want her to realize that there are others who are less fortunate, who live in countries where they are not FREE and where food and water are scarce and have a fire in her heart to do something about it. Mostly, I want her to have a love in her heart for everyone, because God truly is love.
There is so much more of course, but the point is that if I don’t stay consistent in the path God has chosen for me, how can I really teach her these things? How can I leave a mark in other’s hearts? How can I give to others when I have squandered every blessing in my life? How can I have compassion for those who have less, when all I want is more?
Man….I can go so much deeper…..but I will keep all the rest of my thoughts to myself.
Selflessness and simplicity – please find your way into my heart.