"And others are the ones sown among thorns. They are those who hear the word, But the cares of the world and the deceitfulness of riches and the desires for other things enter in and choke the word, and it proves unfruitful." Mark 4:18-19 ESV
I'm cringing about now as I write. I'm being awfully vulnerable with you all and it's a little scary. Now you're all going to be checking out my house and saying, "I wonder how she justified that kitchen? She thinks -- you name it -- is living simply? Hmm, I'm surprised she would do that!"
This is touchy business here. We women love beauty and some of us (you) have more of a natural flare for decorating than others. I have heard the line "God loves beauty" many times in relation to these discussions. Also, "Our job as women is to create a beautiful home for our families".
I agree with both of those statements. One look out my window proves the first one and the second one seems to speak the very essence of all the Bible has to say about women. God is the one who created us with the love for beauty; it seems incongruous to suppose that laying up treasures in Heaven equals bare walls and straight back chairs. Then again, it might be just as incongruous to suppose that Pinterest worthy houses and seasonal decor equal treasures in Heaven either.
Jesus gives us verse upon verse on the subject of possessions and money. He instructs us to give to the poor; He reminds us that our lives don't consist in the abundance of our possessions. He explains that we can't serve God and money and that it is impossible for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God. He exhorts us to be rich in good works and to be generous and ready to share; He tells us not to store up treasure on earth but to store it up in Heaven.
We really aren't lacking on Bible verses about possessions!
What we are lacking is a list that shows us exactly how much we must give to the poor or precisely which possessions might be considered abundance. There is no set of rules that spells out what kind of food or how much clothing we need to have in order to be content.
So how does this look in shoe leather? And will it look the same for you as it does for me? If you can have a dozen pair of shoes, can I safely assume that I can too? If your house has immaculate taste in decor and accessories, is that what I should measure my house against? We're both Christians, see. Both trying to follow the Lord and hoping to end up in the same place. Can't we follow the same rules?