Ownership is so much more than a name on a title or possession of a thing. I have been thinking about an idea and would love to get it over to you in a way that inspires you to “own” what you should and to shed the rest.
Owning something as mine to tend, to repair, to dispose of, or to maintain and use requires honesty and wisdom. It gets me out of dream land and what-if land and wishful thinking and moves me to do something productive with and grateful for what really is.
Here’s an example of one of the ways I had to apply this idea. We bought this old stone house over thirty years ago. The only other house I had lived in during all my growing up years was a farm house. I thought I knew home making in a
real house. I thought all houses were the same … that I only had to step into this one and make it home in the same way. To keep this story short; let me just say that it was not to be.
We had bought ourselves a cottage/cabin full of issues and in our naivete had became owners of an impossible farm house. What a struggle. I tried to “own” it. It wouldn’t. Every thing was wrong about it. No master bedroom on the main level, no carpeted parlor area, kitchen almost non-existent in any farm house sense, and the windows felt like a crying shame to me. I did cry sometimes. Still, I loved the curb appeal and the trees and the unique stone walls.
I can’t tell you exactly when it finally occurred to me that this house is not a farm house with straight painted walls and halls and carpets and properly strung electric fixtures and plug-ins. But when we began to own this place as a cottage or cabin, it began to make sense to us. The new wall coverings and floors could be wood as we liked after-all. And those heartbreaking windows suddenly swung “in” on their old hinges in perfect cottage style. We began to make progress on this house as a real home: new roof, new floors, and the tiny, almost “non-existent” kitchen was now perfect for my own cottage.
In this same way I have learned to own other things that I own: our particular culture, our faith, our family traits, and even my faults and strengths. Maybe you have ideas to share with me here. I hope to unpack some exciting and inspiring ways we can improve our gratitude and our serving as we come into the holiday season. We have so much.