Over the past 6 months or so I have found that the minimalist movement has really been beneficial to me.
While things are not completely better; my anxiety has improved, my clutter has decreased, my house stays more clean (minus my ridiculous amount of coffee-making equipment), I have had more time to practice quiet times with the Lord, and I have felt better about the environmental footprint that I am leaving.
The benefits of minimalism continue to increase day after day.
This lifestyle that I am living now has helped me to meet many new people, it has transformed my norm, and most importantly has helped me to reduce the noise in life so that I can focus on the things that truly matter.
The problem is that despite all of the good things that minimalism has brought me, I do hate something about minimalism.
It’s not the practice of minimalism. It’s not the people who practice minimalism.
It’s the necessity for this movement.
In Ecclesiastes 2:11 King Solomon (one of the wisest men of all time) stated;
“When I considered all that I had accomplished and what I had labored to achieve, I found everything to be futile and a pursuit of the wind. There was nothing to be gained under the sun.”
Solomon had gained everything that the world had to offer and yet he found that none of it satisfied him. That sounds a lot like the world we live in today.
And yet, we live in a country in which we will go in debt to buy bigger and better houses, faster cars, and updated iPhones all while we are ignoring the fact that 22,000 children die around the world everyday due to starvation.
In what world should we need a “minimalist movement?” Isn’t this something that we should have been taught for our entire life? Shouldn’t we have grown up living as simply as possible so that we could help other people out?
I am under the conviction that some day when I meet Jesus I will be held accountable for the things that I have done in my life. I believe that He will tell me that I did some good things, and some bad things, but ultimately because of His sacrifice for me I will be saved.
But, I do not look forward to the part of the conversation in which Jesus is going to point out that while I was chasing material things I was failing to love Him and my neighbor. But thank God that minimalism is offering me a more intentional way of living.
Yes, I love being a minimalist but I also hate the necessity of minimalism because this way of life should not be viewed as the exception but rather as the expectation. If the American dream is to have a ton of nice things hoarded up for my entire life, then I will gladly reject that dream, accept the title of “failure,” and proceed to live in a way that benefits others, not just myself. God has given us a new day to live and I intend to use it for the good of the world around me.