With many uncertainties in our world around us today, I would like to encourage us with Hope Scriptures.
I pray these verses encourage you as you think on them.
What is one bit of advice you would tell a new college graduate, a newly married friend or your child as they move to their first apartment when it has to do with spending money?
There are many bits of advice I can think of but the one is this:
In 2006, we traveled from Arizona to North Carolina for a couple of reasons. One was for vacation and another, to scope things out, thinking we would move there someday. When we returned home, I began the purge-toss-donate-giveaway process. And I haven’t stopped the purge-toss-donate-giveaway process since!
I love to shop. My favorites are purses, shoes, books, clothes and journals. Though now that I’m in my 50’s I finally realize enough is enough!
Two years ago, my husband and I moved from Arizona to Ohio and purchased my parents home just after my Dad passed away. Probably like most in my Dad’s generation, he did not toss away much. We had the privilege *ahem* of purging-tossing-donating-giving away their stuff. This wasn’t new stuff but things like holiday cards, receipts, all kinds of paperwork, photos of people none of us knew, millions of books and Joe Campbell for Mayor ink pens.
For several years, minimalism has become a new trend. I think it is a great trend and one I‘ve been trying to live by and hope others try as well.
So if there is anything you need, I may have it in my giveaway pile. Our shot glass collection is going bye bye, along with a box of books, magazines, and clothes, to name a few. Need a small cabinet? I have one to give.
When out shopping I seem to gravitate to the purse department, the loungewear and housewares. I have more than enough socks, loungewear, purses and we do not need any more dishes. The other day I went to Hobby Lobby, one of my favorite stores for home décor. And now they sell Christian books. I found I book I had to have, placed it in my cart, then proceeded to look around up and down every aisle. In the 90% off aisle I found a couple of items. As I went to check out, I put the book back, deciding I would see if the library had it. I was happy that I spent less than $10! I can do this!
I have XX number of journals and notebooks. I will eventually use them. If I stop buying more! I have XXX number of unread books on my shelf not to mention the XXXdreds unread on my Kindle. If I live to about 150 years of age, I might read them. Just might! Socks, bras, t-shirts, and leggings, oh my! I have enough!
To the young person reading this, (and older too!) when you start working and fixing up your first home sweet home, just buy what you need. Spend your money on fun, experiences, visiting people and seeing the beautiful world we live in. Stuff doesn’t last but memories do last. Write down your experiences in journals and you will have them for years to come.
Another thing about accumulating the stuff is the burden it can be. Cleaning it continually, packing if you’re moving, or trying to sell for a decent price. I had collections I bought years ago that I thought might be valuable someday. Nope, didn’t happen. Sold for nearly nothing at yard sales. Collect memories not stuff.
The promise I have made to myself recently is to stop buying books unless it is a writer friend. I’m working on cleaning out stuffed closets and crammed drawers this month. It will be nice to have space to see what I actually have to wear!
There is hope for our spending habits!
I’d love to hear some of your suggestions for downsizing and uncluttering your spaces. Leave a comment or email me at Barbara@BarbaraAnnRepan.com
Did you know that journaling your thoughts has health benefits? If you Google ‘benefits of journaling’ you will see hundreds of results. Today I’m sharing some benefits that I have experienced and maybe it will encourage you to begin to journal your journey also.
Lately, I have been a little discouraged, especially with my writing. Part of my problem is putting unnecessary pressure on myself to do “all the things” I see other writers doing. And it only leaves me feeling overwhelmed. Can you relate to this in other areas of life? Maybe for you it’s motherhood. You want to be the perfect mom, as it appears your friends are.
A friend gave me some great advice the other day. She is also a writer who understands the ups and downs of this writing life. One of her suggestions was to journal. Journaling was a way of life for me but for some reason I put the ink and paper away last year.
Yesterday morning I decided to spend some time out on our deck. I took my coffee and my journals. Birds were singing, the view is beautiful and the weather breezy cool. Getting out in the fresh air and beauty of God’s green creation can clear the mind. With my pink ink on white paper, I started writing some thoughts and prayers.
Within a matter of minutes I sensed discouragement disappearing. My mind felt uncluttered. As I focused on the beauty surrounding me, I started to feel refreshed. Words filled several pages in my journal. Nothing profound, just words that soothed my soul. Sitting outside and journaling was the self-care I needed.
I continued writing for about 15 minutes some areas I believe God is teaching me about trusting Him. Spending time with Jesus, in the fresh air, is one of the best things I can do to leave behind discouragement. I promised myself I will be out here as much as possible.
Picking up my older journal, I read words that allowed me to remember how far I’ve come in certain areas. In 2012, I wrote a prayer something like this, “Sometimes it still hurts my heart that I didn’t have children. God, help me on the hard days, which I’m thankful are few.” I was reminded of the healing I’ve experienced from this part of my life, only because of God’s grace and mercy.
It’s painful to read my words of the struggles John and I were going through at the time but also thankful those struggles at the time have been resolved. Today we have new struggles but looking back I am hopeful that we will eventually resolve them as well. Vacation memories are so fun to read, along with the funny things my Dad used to say that I have jotted down. I sure miss his funny stories.
Journaling is therapeutic. When I read my old journals, I am reminded of the faithfulness of my God. Worrying about finances-He always provided. Leaving a job-He opened the door for the next one. Health scares-He held my hand.
There are health benefits too. Journaling helps to reduce stress and anxiety, resulting in fewer health problems.
Reading my old journals can be depressing when I read of changes I want to make, but never do. Like exercising consistently or consuming less sugar. That’s when I give myself grace, try harder and ask for God’s help.
Therefore, this is why I believe journaling matters. For the many benefits to our physical health, spiritual health, emotional health and relationship health.
Thank you for reading. Now it’s your turn. How has journaling helped you?
Have you seen the new journaling Bibles? Some are for journaling in the margins and coloring. If you enjoy coloring, be sure to download my free Hope coloring page. Just enter your email at the top of the page to receive the email link of the free gift.