Of Things and Such
National Prayer Breakfast – May 6th and 7th – Have You Registered?
Compassion’s Program Cycle
How Learning Drives Continued Improvements to Child Development
The ‘Say No To Censorship’ Rally on Front of London City Hall
Don't Give Up
“Now, Why Did I Make That Decision?”
Three Challenges for our Values
Today's Revelation
BookMark - I Didn’t Survive
Emerging Whole After Deception, Persecution, and Hidden Abuse (BOOK REVIEW)
A Bridge – A Women (HUMOUR)
Reel Review - The Long Game (MOVIE REVIEW)
Meet Baseball Legends in St. Marys on June 15
“Take Me For A Spin”
The Top 20 Christian Music Albums for April 2024
Shine Your Light and Let the Whole World See

Published August 2023
By Helena Smrcek

Photo by Juliane Liebermann on Unsplash

My husband and I have moved three times during the past three years, to a grand total of 17 moves over the course of our marriage. Yes, we are a little crazy. But the last three changes of address have a perfectly good explanation.

We bought a small house to be renovated, then a trailer to spend the summer in, while the work was supposed to start. It didn’t go as planned. None of us will forget the past three years.

We embarked on this new adventure, and let me just say, we have decided to do this without a general contractor, because adding their fee to the already astronomical cost of lumber just wasn’t in the budget.

As our plans stretched on an on, everyone blaming the pandemic for everything, we realized that our summer in the trailer won’t happen, and spending the winter in it, with our three dogs just didn’t seem like a viable option. So, we moved, again.

I will spare you the litany of delayed deadlines, lumber yard arguments, and tradesmen issues. The fact that we have touched every single thing we own at least once during this episode of our life is scary enough. Oh, did I mention that we own a small farm, which means not only moving our stuff, but also all that pertains to our little zoo as well.

It hit me this week, as I entered my barn, that I truly have all that I have ever wanted, and then some. Looking around the shelves housing everything from seeder to chicken incubator, I felt blessed and overwhelmed at the same time. I think it is time to let some of my stuff go. My kids at times call me a hoarder. They better be joking because I have watched the show on TLC. My house is not a health hazard. Well, maybe only to those who make fun of my stuff and threaten to take it to the closest thrift store.

By the way, the thrift store employees know me, as I do visit at least once a week and graciously refuse the discount coupon offered for the load that I leave behind – because you guest it, on their shelves I might find something that I need. Or not.

Thinking about my stuff, I do question the reason behind it. I have mentioned in my previous stories that back in the mid-80’s my family left our home, and we became refugees. Most of our belongings stayed behind. Is that why I collect things?

My mind travels to my grandmother’s attic full of stuff that would surely excite any antique picker. She too rarely threw anything out. In her case it was the depression of the 30’s, WWII, and the cold war era, where lack of resources was on daily order.

Could this be some sort of a genetic memory? Are we preppers, expecting the unthinkable? Well, the pandemic sort of foreshadowed what is possible – and believe you me, building a house during shutdowns requires cold-war-era-style sourcing skills. Just think of the toilet paper, then imagine floor joists and plywood roof sheeting.

Anyway, sitting in my office, I look around and thank God, that He walked us through that. He kept my ancestors alive through the worst times in our living memory. I can not compare our inconveniences to their level of suffering, yet they found strength to trust God.

So, the question arises: Do I need a security blanket, in form of my stuff? Frankly, some of my possessions are precious memories, century old photographs, kid’s drawings, and vacation pictures. Other items feel like a load of excess weight, and packing them in boxes, taking them in and out of storage, unpacking and looking for space to store them got old fast.

What to do? I will never be a minimalist. Someone I deeply respect just offered me a new label. I looked it up and agreed. I’m a hypercreative person. What that means is that I love multiple sandboxes to play in, preferably at the same time, and the thought of giving any one of them up causes me mild anxiety. I simply do not want to. I love them all, equally.

And this is where I need to invite God into this mess. I fully accept that He created me this way, for His purpose. And if I do that, I too must accept that He will provide the necessary tools to enable me to fulfill the call on my life.

Truly, all that I own now found its way to me only through God’s grace and merci. So, I pray for His grace and comfort in this process of letting go. I pray that in His ultimate wisdom my Father would show me what is baggage and what is a necessity.

As I embark on the next phase of my journey through this life, my prayer is that I would be obedient. I want to be willing to share from the amazing abundance of our lives, may it be kindness, helping hand, or a tangible object.

My new saying is: Send it down the river and see where God uses it for His glory. And so, if you would excuse me now, I’ll be off to get some boxes. Time to sort my treasured bookshelf, without fear and regret, for I’m only a steward, for a blink of an eye, for our Father owns it all.

About the author...
Helena Smrcek
, a journalist, author, and screenplay writer, believes in the power of a well-told story. Her readers can expect a captivating page-turner, filled with thrilling suspense, and heartwarming romance.

She started in publishing as a high school student, freelancing for Mississauga News. Her journalism carrier took off in 1999. Within three years Helena accumulated over 100 by-lines and interviewed Ann Graham Lotz, Carol Lewis, Cec Murphey, Kelita, and others. Her stories, many of them covers, have been published in Canada, the USA, Bermuda, New Zealand, and Australia. In 2002 she accepted a position at Listen Up TV, a current affairs program.

Helena became a founding member of Write!Canada, and The Word Guild, a Canadian national association of writers and editors. She is a graduate of Jerry Jenkin’s Craftsman Class, Act One, Donald Maass’ Fire in Fiction, Writer’s Police Academy, and several mentoring programs.

She regularly attends writers’ conferences and is a past or current member of such organizations as Word Weavers, American Christian Fiction Writers, Sisters in Crime, Toast Masters International, Boni, The Writer’s Guild, and others. Helena loves to participate in NaNoWriMo and hosts a writers’ group.

As an entrepreneur, she is familiar with marketing, branding, and social media. She has volunteered with YMCA, mentoring new Canadians pursuing their business dreams, and was an active member of her local Chamber of Commerce.

When not at her keyboard, Helena loves listening to audiobooks, working on her hobby farm, and traveling. She lives in Southern Ontario with her husband, three Vizslas, several cats, a herd of goats, and an undisclosed number of chickens.

For more about Helena, click HERE