A few weeks ago, a friend’s dog decided to “mark his territory” inside my house. His territory just happened to be my shoe tower, inside my walk-in closet. And with one lift of the leg, several pairs of my shoes were christened with dog urine. I won’t say he ruined my shoes, but he definitely left his mark on them.
Then I got home last night to discover my cat knocked over a vase of flowers on my antique vanity. The water from the flowers damaged the surface of my vanity. This vanity I inherited after the death of a good family friend and it has always meant a lot to me. I have had it for decades and managed to keep it in pristine condition. Until today….now it is marred by a big water spot. All thanks to my new cat.
I have always loved my stuff…shoes, furniture, clothes, decor, mementos from life experiences. But over the last several years, all “my stuff” has become less important. It really has become just stuff. When I went through my divorce, all my stuff didn’t matter. And in fact, I left most of it behind because it was just “stuff”. Today I live pretty light with minimal stuff around. The thing I learned was being with my stuff didn’t enrich my life and being without it hasn’t made life less thrilling. The stuff that matters in life isn’t stuff at all. The things I value in life are the people, relationships and memories I am making along the way. I have started to really invest my time and self into the people that have carried me through the tough times. I’ve started worrying less about the plan, and more about the experience.
In thinking about all my stuff, I can’t help but think about Martha and Mary in the Bible…
Luke 10: 38-42
As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him. She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what he said. But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!” “Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried about upset about many things but few things are needed-or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better and it will not be taken away from her.”
Martha worried about all "the stuff" being in order—I imagine her running around to ensure the floors were cleaned, the plates were garnished, the dust was wiped off the coffee table, etc. And then there was Mary…just soaking up Jesus. Not worrying about the “stuff” but living the experience.
Five years ago I would have been heartbroken over the vanity and angry over the shoes. Five years ago, I was a Martha. Today, I am Mary. Sure, I love my shoes but there is so much more to life than shoes. I’m in a much better place than to be worrying about spoiled plans or ruined things. And although the road to this place hasn’t been easy, it’s been totally worth it.
Dog pee, shoes, and living the experience,
Just a few reflections about everything God is teaching me in this life...a journey deeper into His purpose for my life.