I’m calling minimalism’s bluff

One of the most interesting date nights my husband and I had this past summer was to see a documentary called Minimalism

Overall, there are a lot of things I love about the concept of minimalism—I doubt I’ll ever be an extreme minimalist, but I love the concept of having only the possessions I really need.

Let’s face it: there are a lot of pros to having less stuff: 

  • More financial stability 
  • More freedom
  • Less time spent on shopping, maintaining, moving, and cleaning stuff 
  • Opportunities to rely on others if/when you need something you don’t have (One of the ways Kyle and I first got to know our next-door neighbors was by borrowing a ladder from them!)
  • A chance to practice contentment 

With those pros in mind—and plenty others that this movie offered up—there was something missing.

See, according to this documentary, minimalism is basically the solution to your problems. Minimalism can allegedly even fix your broken relationships. 

I’m calling their bluff. 

At one point in the documentary, the filmmakers interviewed an expert who said something to the effect of, “You can never get enough of the thing you don’t actually want.” 

Let that one sink in. Whoa. 

This documentary was totally secular, and this guy was referring only to stuff—that no matter how many possessions you fill your life with, they will never satisfy you because that’s not what you’re truly after in life. 

My brain couldn’t stop thinking about it from a different angle, though . . . 

Because, in the context of faith/Jesus/Christianity . . . that statement could not be more true.

The thing is, decluttering, getting skinny, making more money, having great friendships, making your home beautiful . . . all of those things do usually provide some benefits. 

I feel happier having less stuff than I do when the clutter starts to pile up, but I’d be in big trouble if I thought that less stuff—or any of the things in the list above—was the be-all and the end-all

No matter how much I get of those things, they will not truly bring me what I’m looking for in life. 

You may know that my profession is life coaching, so I will not deny that I am definitely a fan of personal growth and of making positive changes in life. I get so giddy about helping women get their business and lives in order, reduce stress, and find time for what matters most. I see the way it impacts them, their marriages, their families, and their relationship with God. 

However, I know this truth: Nothing my clients improve in their lives that’s purely earthly will be the ticket to lasting satisfaction. (Thankfully, since my clients are Christian, they usually understand that too.) This is true for all of us.

I wanted to remind you of this super important truth today. If you’re in the midst of busyness in your business or personal life, head down, busting your butt for an end result, I pray you pause and consider what you really hope that end result will get you. Maybe what’s being sold as the magic answer or the magic solution—like minimalism, for example—won’t really get you what you’re after. 

Because the very best goodness in life doesn’t come from hustling and achieving goals. Yes, those things can be really rewarding, and yes, goals can be to God’s glory (and I make sure that I set goals with my faith in mind!). But they pale in comparison to the joy, contentment, peace, mercy, and heaven that’s yours because Jesus sacrificed his life for you.

Can I get an Amen?

“So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, for what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal” (2 Corinthians 4:18). 

 

Diana Kerr is a certified professional life coach for go-getter Christian women. One of her 2016 goals is to declutter her entire home more ruthlessly than ever before—not because she hopes it will solve all her problems but because she wants to hold loosely to this very temporary world. To learn more about her group coaching program for Christian women, open for enrollment in early October, 2016, click here to download her free guide and get on her e-mail list so you receive all the details.