Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Lessons from the Legos

I am gonna just assume you have read about our past few days and start right in.  If you are dazed and confused (join me in my closet) then you may want to go back and read that post.

Otherwise moving on!

You know, I have been pretty proud of myself.  That, of course, was my first mistake!  I am by nature a worrier.  I used to tell friends that I did not need to stop because I was just so good at it.  God has been working on me through the past few years and I have made baby steps in the right direction.  So, I was proud of myself for minimal stressing through this move and not one tear shed.

Yep, again, my first mistake.

Then, THE day came.  And do you want to know what started it all?

These legos-

See them all in a pile?  They use to be about 15 sets that were perfectly put together.  By my 11 year old., of course, not me.  But this is what they looked like when they arrived.  And you know what?  I actually talked pleaded with the packer about these take care of them, they were fragile, they were important to my son, yada yada yada.  I think the part he heard was yada yada yada.  Needless to say, my son lost it.  Big time.

Many hours were invested in the building. I get it.
Didn't the packers care about anything?  Doesn't seem like it at this particular moment.
Next time we are taking them all in the car.  um, no.

And truly, at first I felt horrible.  I felt his pain.  I have unpacked my fair share of broken things.  I tried to sympathize.  I imagined how one of the girls might have reacted if their beloved dolls were broken when they were younger.  But, because we all are tired, displaced and running on fumes, the emotional scene just went on and on and on.  And on.

And then the tears came.  Mine.

Because, you see, after I felt bad I got mad.  And not just at my son.  At myself.

Because it. is. all. just. stuff!

And it is so not important.  Somewhere along the way we seem to have lost sight of what is important and it breaks my heart.  It makes me feel guilty.  It makes me feel like a failure as a parent. It makes me ashamed.  And it should. 

And so this is what I told my son.  And myself-

We have a friend whose son went into the hospital for a quick surgery and came out four weeks later.
We have a friends whose husbands have just been deployed for a year.
We have friends who struggle to keep their type 1 diabetes kiddos alive daily.
We have friends whose marriages are surviving only by the grace of God.
We have friends who are struggling to pay their bills.

Do you think a pile of Legos really matters?
Or broken dishes?
Or a favorite broken lamp?

When did we get to be so petty?  When did we forget that people are so much more important than stuff?

I do not want to be that kind of family. I do not want to be that kind of friend.  When people walk into my house I want them to see a family that cares about them.  I do not want them to see the stuff we have accumulated.  It is worth repeating, I want them to see a family that cares about them.

And so if that means letting go of things to get back to basics that is what we will do.  That is what we ARE doing.  Piece by piece and box by box.  Stuff is going out. 

Is it easy?  Nope.  I like to decorate.  I like cute stuff.  But it is weighing us down.  Literally and emotionally and I refuse to let stuff take over our home and our hearts. 

So when you see empty drawers and empty shelves, know that where there used to be stuff, there is now more room for you. 

Because this family is making changes.  May God get the glory!



  1. This almost made me cry - in a good way! Because it is something I am dealing with too. Getting rid of stuff and holding loosely to the stuff that we do keep, and it's hard sometimes. I have to remind myself how much better I feel and the freedom that I have when I'm not bound by things that are really just things.

    Thanks for sharing this! I found it very encouraging.

    1. You are so right Kym, I do not want to bound by things!

  2. I love this post. I am so happy for the transformation in your life that God is making. Stuff has a strangle hold on most of us. I'm working at it.

    I saw the box of Legos and thought of my son. He likes to build the items the sets are designed for. What he likes even better is taking the components and making new things of his own imagination and creation. Perhaps your son will do the same.

    I dropped by because once upon a time, September 12th of last year, you made a comment on one of my blog posts.

    I received another comment on that post today and noticed yours. I came by to see if your daughter liked the dress pattern and whether you ever made it.

    You mentioned me sharing some photos, but I never got around to it. I've made up that pattern four times now and never took photos. Maybe I'll get that done sometime soon.

    So, just saying hi and just wondering.

    Have a terrific Independence Day,
    Harvest Lane Cottage

    1. Laura, thanks for stopping back in! I will have to go back and check which dress it was. She sews most of her clothes so it is hard to keep up with what she has an has not tried! We would love to see pictures of what you did! Most of my sons legos were his own designs which is what made it so difficult. No instructions to rebuild! I told him it was an opportunity to do some bigger and better but he did not see it that way at he time. Once he makes something he wants to keep it forever. We are working on that! haha

  3. Beautiful! God has really been working on me too lately, especially yesterday. It was Elmer's glue for me (and yes I blogged about it too). LOL

    1. Tiffany, I am going to have to pop in and read your glue story! Glad it isn't just me!

  4. Great post about letting go! Also a hard lesson for your son but one that's necessary for us all. Other people and their struggles are more important than our own small issues.

  5. I just love you, Michele! Thank you for sharing your heart and being such a wonderful encourager!

    1. awwww, love you too! Can't wait to see you all in August!

  6. What a wonderful post. God has been working on me in this area. I'm a bit ashamed to admit, I have my moments where I sound kind of like your son. ;)

  7. It's so hard to let go of stuff! What a great lesson for your son to learn early on.

    I giggle, just a little, in sympathy for your son and empathy for his mama over the Lego sets. My husband still has all his sets from when he was a boy, in their original boxes, with the instructions. He gets so upset when my 5 year old dismantles all HIS sets, loses pieces, makes other things with the parts, etc. I think my husband is learning, too. :-D

  8. God wants us to empathize with people and have compassion on them for sure, but I don't think he wants us to be ashamed of our lives. God is not ashamed of you or your son. Having experiences like you did with the Legos makes you realize the other people and what they are going through. Your son will learn as he grows and matures because YOU are obviously a compassionate person and you love the Lord. Don't be so hard on yourself. God will bless your efforts as a mom!!!

  9. It always amazes me how God can use the little things to teach us important lessons.

  10. Such a great post! It is just stuff but it's hard to teach that to our kids. I find myself struggling with wanting to show sympathy and wanting them to understand that there are much bigger things that are of greater importance - especially the people that we know.
    That's wonderful that your family is committing to getting rid of excess stuff to make room for others. We recently moved (our 3rd move in 1 year!!!) and we did a huge purge! It felt wonderful. Now I feel less stressed because I have more room and less stuff that clutters up the house and takes up space. It's not what matters! Great lesson!

    1. Thank you Lexi. I hope your move has gone well! I see a lot more empty spaces here and I love it! Imagine...empty drawers!

  11. Stuff! I keep telling my kids and myself that people are more important than things. It is so easy for something as little as Legos to make us lose focus of what is really important. Thanks for sharing this.


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