When we were rearranging Mia’s room we realized that she has a lot of books. And by a lot I mean hundreds. These are a collection of books given as gifts over the years. When Mia was born one of my friends worked at a publishing company and she really jump started out library. My mom also loves books and I read a lot too! While not all or even half of the books were gifts, there is something about purchasing a book that makes it feel like an investment to me.
I do realize though that there are a lot of kids out there who don’t even have one book in their home, so I try to give away books often, but now it was time for a total purge. As I went through the books, picking out which ones I would save for Luna and which ones to give away, I thought about the amount of money, gifts or not, spent on all those books. I believe in the power of reading but I also am aware of the fact that maybe our obsession with books had gotten out of hand.
When I was thinking about where to donate the books I knew right away they had to go to the library. I spend a lot of time at the library tutoring and see so many families coming in to check out books. Then it hit me. For where your treasure is, there you heart will be also. There it was again. Same verse . Were all these books really about fostering a love for reading in my children or was it just another way I was storing up my treasures here on Earth?
I realized again,right at that moment, that my possessions really kept me from living the life I want for myself and my kids. I justified owning all these books by using them to teach my children but what was I really teaching them? I knew right then that not only had I been fostering in them a love for reading but a desire to own things too.
I then was reminded of a You Version Bible reading plan called The More of Less. In it the authors talks about how having less possessions frees us up to do more of the things we are meant to do. I started the plan over again in hopes of helping to make sense of my own possessions. This is the verse from today: It was exactly what I needed to read. Life does not consist in an abundance of possessions or books.
Mia and I loaded 60 books into a bag to be donated to the library. They would be available to me and my family when ever we wanted as well as countless other families. I did not need to own them and by donating them to the library they could be enjoyed by countless other families. Again my intentional act of giving led me to learning so much more about myself and my heart. By being intentional in my acts of giving, serving and loving I am also growing in my faith.
A mother of one of the girls I tutor brought me a bag as big as the bag of books I gave away, full of nice jackets and winter items. She knew I would know of someone who could use them. I am continually blown away by people’s generosity. I hope that by writing about this journey , you too will be inspired to give, serve and love.
Here is an update on my coffee. After my Day 1 post I decided I was not going to spend my $5 on a coffee at Starbucks this morning. I would drink my coffee at home and that was it. I would save that money for something else. Well while I was in Christiansburg shopping with my mom I got a text from a friend and in it was a gift card to Starbucks. The timing was perfect. I gave up and committed that money I would have spent on coffee to serving and glorifying HIM and in return I was able to treat my mom and I to a coffee. What a small but very meaningful cup of coffee it was.