Why and how to make this Lent a season of “death-cleaning”

jollyjetta (Posted by) Level 3
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Very few of us are so radical, but we want to be more radical than we are.

Your kids don’t want your stuff. Probably no one wants your stuff. When you’re gone, it won’t be worth much more than old newspapers or plastic CD cases — the library you carefully created over the years, that lovely Victorian table you found at the yard sale, your mother’s china that’s marked birthdays and holidays since you were little, the cross-stitched message your grandmother spent days making for your wedding with her arthritic hands.

Thought - Things - Lives - Memories - Children

It’s a painful thought. Such things mark our lives and keep our memories alive. I wanted my children to use my books as I’ve used them, but they’re not me and have other things to do with their lives. I’d like one of them to take my grandmother’s cross-stitch, but they barely knew her. You can’t take it with you, and that’s easy to accept, but you also can’t pass it on, and that’s harder to accept.

But here, conveniently, comes Lent. We can get something out of this loss, a Lenten discipline that nicely combines fasting and alms-giving and can easily be tied to prayer.

Months - Forbes - Magazine - Truth - Head

A few months ago, Forbes magazine described this “hard truth.” The head of something called the National Association of Senior Move Managers explained: “This is an IKEA and Target generation. They live minimally, much more so than the boomers. They don’t have the emotional connection to things that earlier generations did. And they’re more mobile. So they don’t want a lot of heavy stuff dragging down a move across country for a new opportunity.”

It’s not just younger people. I don’t want more stuff either. My sister inherited all my parents’ things and when she died, I didn’t want it. My mother’s taste in furniture isn’t mine (boy...
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