My husband and I have lived in our house for over forty-eight years. When we had it built, we were told it was a good starter home. I was pregnant with my second son, and we figured in a few years we would probably have to move into a bigger house, especially if we had any more children. We never moved.

We had twin daughters two years later and another son three years after that. They are all grown up now, but all of them have left pieces of their past with us, items they don’t have room for in their own homes, but which they do not want to throw away.

Paul is a thing collector—if an item qualifies as a thing, he collects it, and he loves to go to rummage sales. I like books and am always looking for something to read. Most of my books have been traded in to bookstores for, you guessed it, more books. My daughter lives near Nashville where there is a huge book-trading store. We always make a point to go to McKay’s when we visit her.

Paul also is a wood worker. Over the years he has filled a garage and much of our basement with wood that he figures he will use someday. He doesn’t buy it, but lots of friends have donated to his woodpile. Still other friends know that if they ever need wood for a project of their own, they have only to ask and Paul gives it to them.

Paul has built furniture for every room in our house. He makes segmented wood turnings that he doesn’t sell; he just likes making them, and giving them away to anyone who admires them. Still, he has a lot of completed projects in our basement.

I also have a stockpile of completed paintings that never found a home. I have given away a lot of paintings to relatives, but I think I have saturated the family market. I’ve been thinking of trying to sell some on a local website.

Paul surprised me by starting to go through all the “stuff” that we have stored at our house. I was happy to join him. We have made a good start, but we have a lot more to go through.

My point in telling you all this? There is clutter in everyone’s lives. Sometimes it is things we have collected, and sometimes it includes activities that waste our time or habits that we cannot give up. Sometimes it is sin that needs to be dealt with. Occasionally we need to take a good look at ourselves and get to work discarding the non-essential. It takes time, effort, and self-discipline, but it is worth it in the end.cc2664d5bb01a3c23e1532c2270418c5

“Since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance, and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us.” HEBREWS 12:1, NASB


Bettilu Davies About Bettilu Davies

Bettilu Davies is a wife, mother, grandmother, and great grandmother. She has authored six published books, first writing fiction for children and teens and recently branching into adult Christian fiction. She has taught piano since 1968 and enjoys reading, crocheting, knitting, paper art, and painting in oils, acrylics and water color.


  1. Janet K Brown (@janetkbrowntx) says:

    Love the remembrances, Bettilu. Oh, yes, a good inventory of our lives is essential from time to time. We are all “hoarders” in some ways.

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