On my blog I’ll be talking about the barriers I think are preventing me from living out my faith to the fullest. Its important for me to share because most of these barriers seem to be created by me and may not actually be barriers after all. This is where I would like your insight.
We all know I love martinis (especially lemon drop!) I love writing, my family and friends and I love me some Dorothy Day. The Dorothy Day part is what I want to focus on in this post because although she is not a saint (hopefully at some point she will be!) I take a lot of what she has to say to heart and her way of living influences some of my ideals. Dorothy, to me, exemplifies genuineness. She seemed to be true to herself and others. She had friends who were very opposed to Catholicism therefore it makes her choice to live an outwardly Catholic life inspiring to me. She chose poverty and did not expect anything from those she served. She simply wanted to be there for them and create a hospitable environment. She lived simply with less.
Meanwhile, I battle with with my belongings and living simply. Do I have too much? Should I give more away? Sometimes I get caught up in the whole “I need to live in a tiny home! that will fix this!) thing and yeah, that misses the point. Living in a tiny home may solve my issue of having too much stuff but what about my mind set? Why do I really want to live more simply? Minimalism is all the rage right now (that may be changing, I don’t know) and I have always loved the idea of it. I hate to feel cluttered and don’t want to feel tied down by my belongings. If it were up to me, there would be NOTHING in our basement. my husband agrees but I can’t get myself to give anything more away. And as I write this I think to myself that my desire to live more minimally feels deeper then I just don’t like clutter. I struggle to explain this, it just feels like there is more room for me to love and spend time with others and less time for me to worry about my mess of a house or cleaning. When I read about Dorothy Day or Mother Teresa and their voluntary poverty, I see two women who were not consumed by the latest trends and what they looked like. They seemed to be so focused on humanity and simply being with others. Its as if I see having too much stuff or too much of an interest in material items as blocking me from living more like the saints did.
Then there is me. I’m going to be honest. I love trends. I used to be very in to fashion, now I am more interested in how my home is styled. I don’t want to be that person who loves Target but I get it. I love Target. Sorry! I enjoy the minimalist and modern scheme of of our home. I love how easy it is to vacuum under our furniture! I feel peace when I am in my space because it looks appealing, to me. And I feel guilty about all of that.
I have this home that I love to decorate yet I struggle to invite people in. I like my peace and quiet. My cup of coffee on my midcentury couch. I want to live like the saints and Jesus did but I feel like all of my stuff and this little cozy space I have made prevents me from living in the way of radical hospitality, which is how I see Jesus living. I wonder if I need to take less interest in some of the material things I enjoy and spend more time out in my community being present with others.
Does anyone else struggle with this? Any ideas on how to reconcile this issue? How do you balance your love for material things while still living with less and focusing more on relationships?
I will be posting more about this in the future as I start to come more to terms with my thoughts and hear what you all have to say. Thank you for reading.