"He answereth and saith unto them, He that hath two coats, let him impart to him that hath none;
and he that hath meat, let him do likewise."
My family's journey towards a simpler, more minimal lifestyle has been motivated and driven
by our intense desire to follow Jesus Christ and the single-minded, focused life He lived while on earth.
It is impossible to be completely in tune with His mind,
if we are allowing our earthly possessions to overtake and consume our every waking thought.
In Matthew 6:22-25, Jesus said this,
"The light of the body is the eye: if therefore thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light. But if thine eye be evil, thy whole body shall be full of darkness.
If therefore the light that is in thee be darkness, how great is that darkness!
No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other;
or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.
Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink;
nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on.
Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment?"
Is there not more to life than a closet over-stuffed with designer clothes,
a bigger-than-you-need fancy house,
and excessive possessions?
We cannot serve both God and money, Jesus said.
He said our eye...or our focus...should be single.
When we split our focus, energy, and purpose into trying to serve money/possessions...
and God, simultaneously,
it does not work.
James 1:8 says,
"A double minded man is unstable in all his ways."
God is a jealous God.
He wants to be our all in all.
When we put our focus and energies into accumulating the things that will one day pass away,
instead of in Him and the building of His Kingdom,
our physical possessions become our god, and we live to serve them, instead of Him.
He knows that we have basic needs, in this life,
and He faithfully provides them from day to day.
But, He doesn't want us to allow anything on this earth to become our master,
including our physical possessions.
Remember when He was providing daily manna for the Israelites in Old Testament times?
They were not to gather more than one day's worth at a time, (except on the 6th day, so they wouldn't have to gather on the Sabbath), and if they tried hoarding up more than one day's worth at a time, it would spoil and be inedible by the next day.
(Exodus chapter 16)
They never had to worry about the supply of manna running out.
The same God who gave them this day their daily bread was there in all of their tomorrows
to provide in the same way.
Hoarding up more than we need and clinging to excess will spoil our lives.
It will cause us to take our single-minded focus off God as being our Provider,
and it will become our master.
It will cause us to buy into the delusive illusion that we are self-sufficient.
In reality, that will never be the case.
"...without Me ye can do nothing."
Acts 17:28 says,
"For in Him we live, and move, and have our being."
What if we followed the example of the early church and gave away our excess to those who are in need?
"And the multitude of them that believed were of one heart and of one soul: neither said any of them that ought of the things which he possessed was his own; but they had all things common."
"And all that believed were together, and had all things common;
And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need.
What if we heeded John the Baptist's advice and took our extra coats and gave them away to those who have no coat, and gave away our extra groceries/meat to those who are hungry?
How would our world change if each one of us made the choice to shed our excess,
to give to those who are in need,
and to follow Jesus' example of maintaining a single-minded focus on what is eternal?
"Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt,
and where thieves break through and steal:
But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt,
and where thieves do not break through nor steal:
For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also."
One of the people who has been most encouraging to us on our journey towards minimalism
is Joshua Becker of Becoming Minimalist.
Joshua's interview is the very first one we conducted for Inner Views,
and you can read that interview by clicking HERE.
Do you feel a longing to live a more minimal life?
A life in which your focus turns more towards things that are eternal rather than temporal?
A life in which experiences become more important than things?
If so, you will love Joshua's new book, scheduled for release on May 3rd.
And, here is the wonderful opportunity I mentioned in the title of this post.
If you pre-order his book,
you can register for FREE for his 12-week "Uncluttered" Course!!!!
This course has previously cost $89!
We pre-ordered our book today, and I am so looking forward to reading it
and participating in the 12-week online course that will include videos, webinars, challenges,
and other helpful resources to motivate and inspire us all to live a life not stymied by our possessions.
Here are some ways to order Joshua's new book:
Once you order the book, all you have to do to register for "Uncluttered" for free
is to go HERE, click on "Get Free Access Now", and fill out the registration form,
INCLUDING the order number from where you placed the order for his book.
Then starting on Monday, May 9th, the "Uncluttered" course will begin!
For more information, you can visit Joshua's Blog.
Kevin, Zachary, and I are feeling a new sense of peace since shedding so much excess from our lives.
As we look around our home and garage, we see that we still have a long way to go.
God is guiding us on this journey, and it is a work in progress that will take time to complete.
But, we are a whole lot closer to our goal than we were when we started.
And, let me tell you, it feels GREAT!
"I have shewed you all things, how that so laboring ye ought to support the weak, and to remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how He said, It is more blessed to give than to receive."
To read about our minimalism journey, please click the following links: