Lately I’ve been hiding things. I’ve been slowly slipping toys into our basement storage room, wondering if the boys will notice. (They haven’t yet.) My reason? Well, the boys don’t play with at least half of the toys we have. They’d much rather play with leftover wood from Chris’s porch project, big backyard sticks, or a roll of masking tape. I’ve had this notion of toy sneaking for a while, this notion that maybe stuff really doesn’t bring happiness. But I haven’t had courage to act. Questions (and fear…) arose. Will the boys be bored? Will they be sad? Will they even care? I know the truth from the Bible, but somehow it hadn’t stuck in my heart. Until now. I watched our kids receive countless Christmas gifts just weeks ago. Now they sit dusty and untouched. The love lasted a few days or a week and then faded. What did last in their hearts? Crazy Eights and Spot It! played with family. The question game at dinner. Drawing pictures for Bubba and Gammy. Jumping in pillow pile huge. Building Lego vehicles way passed regular bedtime. Popcorn and snuggly time on the living room floor. Library books scattered on the floor full of pictures and stories. We don’t need much. Our kids don’t need much. So why do I buy into this illusion that we do? Why do I buy more gifts, hope for more stuff? It makes a mountain over me. I think that somehow it will satisfy. Now, though, I’m ready to turn my back on the illusion.
In my toy sneaking process, I’ve tried to keep a short list of toys that our boys do play with most often. Those toys we will keep, and the others we will give. And when I browse the internet or Target aisles, I’ll remember. “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth…”