"There was a rich man, who was clothed in purple and fine linen and who feasted sumptuously every day. And at his gate lay a poor man named Laz'arus, full of sores, who desired to be fed with what fell from the rich man's table; moreover the dogs came and licked his sores. The poor man died and was carried by the angels to Abraham's bosom. The rich man also died and was buried; in Hades, being in torment, he lifted up his eyes, and saw Abraham far off and Laz'arus in his bosom.
How often do I act as the rich man, forgetting those who are hurting or who are considered outcasts by society? I often forget to think just how much God loves them... no less than me. I've come to realize that many of my possessions weigh me down and hold me captive... I really want to simplify my life, to own fewer material items and grow in appreciation for having less. In short, I want to "get simple".
I am a bit of a packrat. The problem is that the thought of throwing things out actually causes me a lot of anxiety. What if I regret it? What if I throw out something I need or want later? (Silly, I know!) But I'm reaching a point where it's causing me more anxiety trying to hold on to so much stuff! I've been improving, trying to let go of things that just sit in boxes. I desire to get more organized but the task of doing so is overwhelming in and of itself...
I've been much more aware lately of how my money is spent as well... When I think of the material things I'd like to have, I often think about those who don't even have the basic necessities of life: food, shelter, clothing, or even adequate water. I rarely buy bottled water because when I do, I feel terrible for those dying from poor water, who would live if they could only drink what comes out of my tap.
I believe this is going to be quite a process for me but it's my goal to simplify my life by parting with all the material baggage I have. By this time next year, I want to be free of the anxiety I feel from carrying around so much "stuff". I want to re-train my mind to keep only what is important or of high sentimental value and toss the rest. I believe this will help me see the needs of others in order to help them. The Lord wants us to be ready to drop everything to follow him. The more I have, the more difficult that will be and I don't want to be hindered by materialism.
Lord, help me to know what is truly important so that I may follow you with all my heart, mind and soul. Let me not be burdened by materialism and ease my anxiety so I can part with the things that weigh me down.
v Damion and kids
v My parents
v Jill – that the Lord would give her some Christian friends and strengthen family relationships
v Bill – that he continues to recover from illness and that he regains the strength he needs quickly
v Ruth – that her husband would come to understand the Catholic faith
v Renee and children – that the Lord would give them strength and peace in this time of tragedy
v Jose and Amy Lopez – for the repose of their souls
v For the Lopez children and family - dealing with their loss