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“I Have Everything I Need.”

August 24, 2009

I subscribe to Freecycle, a community “newsletter” of sorts where people in your area can post up items they need or want to give away, in order to keep things out of landfills and garbage cans. (It’s consistently amazing what people throw away — my brother-in-law does cleaning side-jobs for some local (Christian, to boot) publishers and yesterday, when I was over at his house, he pulled out an enormous garbage bag full of brand new boxes of pens that someone had left by a dumpster. So instead of leaving them to mold in his garage, we donated them to a kid’s school supply drive. Tsk tsk, unnamed Christian publishers. Looks like someone isn’t wearing their own WWJD bracelets…okay, that was judgy. Sorry.)

Each day, when Freecycle pops up in my email inbox, I usually delete it right away, which to most people would seem pointless — “Why even get it, if it immediately is discarded? Don’t you see the irony in sending something meant to keep items from the garbage to the email trash can?” (And the answer is yes, I do.) I’ve used it before, and am open to using it again, but for now, I am holding back from acquiring any more stuff to squeeze into my tiny, tiny apartment. I never really thought much about it until today when, as I clicked on the little white box next to the email, my first thought was, “I have everything I need.”

I have everything I need.

While not due to my own skill, that is a deeply profound statement.

In a world where 2 billion people live on less than $2 a day, and where 30,000 people die each day from malnutrition and water-related disease, to know that I have everything I need (and always have) is, in fact, an absolutely revolutionary, soul-affirming, life-giving, irrational, radical miracle.

I tend to fuss and worry about money a lot, and it’s so easy for me to get sidetracked into feeling sorry for myself because my savings account is a little skinnier than it used to be. But then I come across these pure breaths of grace, hidden in the seemingly insignificant moments that end up meaning everything. Revealed in these moments is the absolute truth in knowing that I have all that I need and leaps beyond that — food, clean water, shelter, a job, health insurance, a car, a family, friends, books.

I am a person who lacks nothing.

To be able to make that statement is in itself an incredible expression of grace. Not that I have earned grace or ever deserved it, but that it has been lavished upon me in so many ways I cannot understand.

“This is real love—not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to take away our sins.” -1 John 4:10

By the grace of God, through the subtle, gentle, healing dance of the Holy Spirit at work in my life, I have everything I need.

Do you?

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Grandma Carr permalink
    August 27, 2009 8:47 am

    Caroline….Sooo right! I see this at our church’s clothing/food/furniture ministry. We give away all that is brought to us. What, for the materially blessed is trivial, becomes a step up in life quality for those that have so little. We have donations of day old pastries and bread from a nationwide bread shop. Just a small bag of these goodies bring great smiles to young and old alike as they carry them out the door. What a heart warmer for our volunteers. God is good!! Love you, Grandma

  2. Caroline permalink*
    August 29, 2009 3:47 pm

    @ Grandma!

    God is very good — I love seeing all the ways that He provides for us, even though some may seem small and insignificant.

    There is a print I framed in my apartment that says, “Life is a series of thousands of tiny miracles.” Every day, I find this to be true. 🙂

    Love you too! And see you next weekend!

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