“You can do this. It’s just a closet,” I told myself. But the old doors stood defiantly in front of me, daring me to try. The last fortress in my war into the Land of Less was proving to be a far greater opponent than I had anticipated. Still, I had already traveled so far, I wasn’t turning back.
I stumbled across Joshua Becker’s Becoming Minimalist more than a year ago. His insights intrigued; he shared over and over how less was actually more. I began devouring Joshua’s articles and blogposts. Eventually I moved beyond hungry reader into the active minimalism realm.
I purged so much stuff. Old picture frames. Craft supplies, Dishes. Enough books to furnish a public library. School supplies. Furniture, jewelry, winter coats and boots. Christmas decorations. Knick knacks. Puzzles and games. It took more than 25 carloads to nearby thrift stores, donations to our kids and friends, plus bags for the garbage collectors before I began to feel I had arrived on the continent of Minimalism.
It has been hard. Excrucatingly so at times. The handsome hubs and I have lived in the same house for 21 years, raising our six kids and now, enjoying frequent visits from our grandchildren. Ours is a humble home, always needing something fixed or updated. Still, it’s nearly 3,000 square feet of humble. Eight people can cram a lot of stuff into three thousand square feet over the years. And it seems like “stuff” can breed overnight so the decades had given birth to an overwhelming amount of…stuff.
It has been hard, yes, but so liberating. I haven’t arrived. I’ve merely stepped foot on the continent. I’m looking around, getting my bearings. The finish line (if there is one) is a long way off.
But the benefits of living with less are so motivating that I want to battle on. To persist in this lifestyle. My closets were once like Mary Poppin’s carpet bag. The sheer volume of things crammed in went well beyond what the mind could fathom. It made getting dressed in the morning difficult. Digging past all of the just in cases dresses, and the it was on clearence blouses, and the I used to wear it t-shirts, and the it looked so good in the fitting room outfits, and the but they’re in style pants to the few outfits I loved and actually wore was time consuming and tiring.
I was now on what I was hoping was the final purge – Marie vs. Closet round 3 – so I threw open the doors and vowed no mercy.
(spoiler alert: there may be a round 4.)
I won’t go into all of the benefits of the Less is More movement because I already directed you to Becker’s site, where he has been walking the walk and writing about it for more than a decade. Really good stluff.
I will, however, let you in on my favorite less is more equation.
Really, I like to flip the equation to More is Less because for this one, it starts with more, and brings me to the abundant land of less.
More of Christ. Less of me.
More of Christ means less of Marie. A fuller translation of that beautiful equation?
More courage, less fear.
More peace, less worry.
More freedom, less chains.
More joy, less discouragement.
More hope, less despair.
Mroe redemption, less regret.
More rest, less stress.
More of who I was created to be and less of who the world would mold me into.
He must increase, but I must decrease. John 3:30 NKJV
Like Becker, I am finding that letting go of stuff, other people’s definitiion of success, and toxic thinking brings more than I anticipated.
Likewise, letting go of Marie’s way, surrendering to the Master’s Plan, magnifying Him and minimizing me, well, that brings so much more…it brings the most abundant living.
Oh magnify the Lord with me, and let us exalt His name together. Psalm 34:3
PS If you have closet woes, here are a few sites that might help:
I’m dreaming of Courntey Carver’s Project 333 but who knows, maybe I could reach the 10 Item wardrobe?
What about you…are you letting go of anything to make room for more in your own life? I love hearing from you!
Grateful for this wonderful life,
Marie with a 🙂
Oh you write so lovely.
You May Be giving me incentive- I need more than that- I need prayer- long long story! So much stuff and I only raised three. I’m in pain emotionally and physically and yet I can’t seem to find the go button on how to start and not get overwhelmed further- and also depressed from losing the stuff that I love dearly( hoarders mentality from growing go up moving every few Yrs and having the most loving grandfather who went thru two world wars and never threw ANYTHING out.
Vicki, I did lift some prayers for you and will continue. There are a lot of good “how to get started” encouragements online, I love Be More With Less, and all things Joshua Becker 🙂
Love your wonderful “equation,” especially putting your name in it! I wrote it out in my journal, “more of Christ means less of Carol.” Who doesn’t want more courage, peace etc! All a byproduct of living close to Christ. Thanks for a great article.
Thanks, Carol, for letting me know you liked it. Blessings to you as you allow Him to be mangified!
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