“For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.”
Pretty good advice, huh? Matthew 6:21. Regardless of where you are with your faith, this statement runs deep. It’s self-reflective. It leaves you exposed. It changed our life.
Let me be clear, there is nothing wrong with nice things. There is nothing wrong with success. There is nothing wrong with having a pile of money. It takes all kinds to run society. But what is important to you?
I grew up in a driven household. Success was the norm; it was to be expected. Mediocrity, at least in the eyes of the world, was frowned upon. Mediocrity = Failure. “You’ll be digging ditches for the rest of your life” played in my head like a scratched record. It’s somewhat comical typing that now with these sore, calloused hands.
Shellee and I met when I was 19 (she was 22… but that’ll be our secret). I was a sophomore at a top-tier university, double major in mathematics and physics, with big dreams of a big future. After college it was going to be off to the FBI, CIA, or some other government agency. It was going to be a prominent career with the life that goes along with it…. The house, the cars, 2 kids (eventually), vacations, pensions, and saving boatloads for retirement. My head was making plans for us, but my heart was fighting for space.
Graduation came, we turned down a job in Annapolis with the Department of the Navy and came home to a small apartment in the woods and a job as an insurance adjuster. Money was tight, the apartment was drafty, but we were finding happiness. Still my head had other plans. My head wanted my cake and eat it too. I was to be the next CEO of this Fortune 500 company…….
…..Fast forward 10 years later. We’re living on 1/8 acre with 6 mouths to feed on one paycheck (not counting the critterS). Money has never been easy and never will be easy. I never used that degree, I’m not the CEO of that Fortune 500 company…. I’m not even middle management. Our hearts won. We decided where we wanted our treasure, and it’s in 8 little feet that run barefoot through the grass in our backyard. Our treasure is in doing for ourselves, relying on ourselves and our Maker. Our treasure is in our marriage and being each others best friend. Our faith says we will be accountable for our actions and the rearing of our children. My head says He doesn’t care what kind of car we drive.
We homestead because it brings us closer to God and closer to each other. We homestead because of the simplicity of the life it provides for us and our children. We homestead because it ties us into God’s creation. We homestead because when you take it all away, we still have each other…. and there is no greater treasure than that.