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Moving Ahead and Looking Back: Day 4

But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into the world and we can take nothing out of it.
I Timothy 6:6

This time would be different. Even though we were on a tight schedule, I kept things pared-down and cleaned out in anticipation of a move. And, as we packed, knowing we were going to an apartment, I packed the big stuff and stored it in one area to be taken away while the basics stayed out so we could live after the movers took away the majority of our things. Then, according to plan, we would pack everything up, put them in the cars and move them to our apartment.

Long story short: When packing up time came, “the basics” turned out to be far, far more than I had anticipated. Our back-up plan, if there was more than we could carry, was to rent a trailer to transport the excess. When it became apparent that was where we were headed, my husband went to the U-Haul place,only to be told that cars like ours can’t take a trailer hitch without an elaborate welding procedure that they wouldn’t be able to do for several days.    

Four wonderful friends, who had come to help us and stayed to the bitter end, started packing both of our cars with whatever would fit in. One particularly resourceful friend started breaking up boxes and stuffing whatever would fit in the nooks and crannies of both cars. The logistics were worthy of the Beverly Hillbillies, but, even so, there was a lot left over. At this point, in a cold, drizzly rain, our dear friend said, “Put it in my Suburban. We can bring it to you when we visit next summer,” and began gathering up the leftovers and transferring them to his car.

Fast forward a few days to unpacking day at our apartment. We quickly realized that there was no rhyme, reason or prioritizing to a lot of what we had: Lampshades, but no lamps, decorative candles, but no drinking glasses.

But then the fun began: it became a game to see how little we could make a life with. I found out that, so far anyway, I can prepare meals with one pan and one skillet, that a set of towels and a set of sheets don’t take long to wash and dry, most activities of life can be accomplished with something to sleep on, something to sit on and something to sit and eat at, and I really only wear a few of the clothes that are in my closet.

Our new home is admittedly bigger than our current one-bedroom digs, but some of the lessons are transferrable. I think God is going to use this time to teach me—if I will learn—some new habits regarding simplifying.

And maybe, just maybe, how to be more contented in the process.

Nancy Shirah

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