Rather than garage sales, or estate sales, it is popular here in OK to have auctions. There are several auction companies that come in and organize sales for a percentage of the take. Most of the time the auctions are dealing with older people who are downsizing, maybe moving from the farm to town or to a rest home. Many times someone has died and the family hires the auction company to take care of the estate. One time, we went to one of these auctions way out in the country. The house was an old trailer house with a couple of old sheds surrounding it. All were full of furniture and junk. The auction company had placed other sale items in long rows in the yard. The amount of junk and the size of the house were so disproportional that it made me sick. Seriously, I could hardly breathe. Here was this person’s life laid out on the lawn with people milling about looking through it. Every jar and tupper-ware bowl, every clothes pin, every gift sack and wrapping paper, every piece of useless junk imaginable was there – saved for what purpose? It was overwhelming to me. I told Toby, "When I die, please don’t lay my life on the front lawn for everyone to see."
On the one hand this made me want to go home and get rid of junk around my house, but some of you might recognize that this has a deeper spiritual meaning. I certainly recognized it. Along with the physical need to clean out my life (get rid of the unnecessary junk), came the realization that I need to clean out the spiritual junk too. The garbage that we hide from others – the hate, the envy, the bitterness, the procrastination, the laziness, the busybody, the spite, the guile, the malice, etc. all needs to be thrown out. If you don’t rid yourself of these things, they will be shown to the world someday. What is in your heart will be laid bare. You may think you have it well hidden or even controlled, but it comes out your mouth and maybe your nose.
Alison, over at the Lollipop Tree, posted about moving her mother, also. She mentioned the sentimental things that she kept for her mother – storing them away because she could not part with them. She had this great line about keeping things for her mother: after all, she kept them for so many years it would be like a slap in the face to just dispose of them...
I understand perfectly. Some things are of value. So much of Mom’s house was the letters, the history, and the sentimental and precious things. It was difficult to go through those things. I, too have those things in my home. But we do need to stop every once in a while and go through the garbage that we hang on to - thinking that someday we might use it again – like the 26 plastic butter dishes with lids. If we don’t clean out our junk, someone will have to someday. Sometimes I envy Buck with his RV and movable life.