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Clearing Storage Units

Store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. Matthew 6:20-21


Since the sale of our house in 2020, my parents’ passing, and my mother-in-law’s move from her patio home to an assisted living facility to, most recently, a group home setting, we’ve accumulated five storage units—six if you count our apartment, the difference being it has cozy living spaces, AC, heat, and running water.


Our apartment has served as a temporary dwelling until we’d felt lead and ready to return to home ownership. Given the perpetual increase in cost for these storage units—and apartment rent—my husband said we’re basically paying the equivalent of a mortgage.


The time has come to muscle up, exert the energy to make some distribution/donation/restoration/selling decisions. Here’s the kicker. We only have access to three of these units in North Carolina. Two are in Texas. (I feel you gaping at the madness) And what exactly did we store in that first unit from late 2019? Huh. I honestly couldn’t remember.


After a grueling six+ hours at Public Storage (because there’s no other place I’d rather be on a Saturday …), I eventually, I found my way through floor-to-ceiling boxes to the back wall where I discovered significant moisture damage, and a crumbling cinderblock wall and flaky ceiling that's coated our stuff in layers of white.

Sentimental, costly, or not, our earthly possessions have sat in a dark, deteriorating space, suffering the inevitable fate of being stored and forgotten.


In the process of unearthing boxes and evaluating the contents … trekking down memory lane ... I hadn’t realized I’d stored truck-loads of emotion, pleasant and painful. Because no matter where any of our stuff ends up, the storage units in my heart held roots of bitterness, regrets and anger at the evidence of failed attempts or unfinished business, and the guilt, oh the guilt, of trashing gifts that no longer bring me joy.


The courage to let go of earthly possessions is a necessary skill to prepare us for eternity where we take NOTHING with us. Our heavenly home awaits where we’ll leave behind all we own, gaze upon the beauty of the Lord, and revel forever in the lives that were impacted for ultimate good because of our interactions with them—the greatest treasures. But it's pointless to keep a loose hold on our possessions if we are storing up attitudes and emotions that don't please God.


As we seek to obey him, he’ll help us clear the storage units of our hearts and make us more effective in introducing others to his treasured gift of salvation.


Set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. Colossians 3:1-3


Points to Ponder

  • What negative emotions or attitudes have you stored up that might be causing spiritual deterioration?

  • How do you effectively keep your mind and heart on things above?

  • What eternal treasures are you most eager to enjoy?

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6 Comments


Katherine Pasour
Katherine Pasour
Sep 14, 2023

As someone who saves sentimental objects, letters, and stuff others would trash, I have great empathy for your recent foray into your storage unit. Although I don't have an official storage unit, I have a basement full of "stuff" which needs to be sorted through and most of it tossed out. Your message is timely and encouraging. Thank you, Mary.

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Mary A. Felkins
Mary A. Felkins
Sep 15, 2023
Replying to

How good of the Lord to speak to you about your “stuff”. I pray he’ll guide your decisions about what to keep and what to toss and give you peace about your decisions.

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J.D. Wininger
J.D. Wininger
Sep 14, 2023

Oh my, but we can all relate to have far too many things stored away, both physically and emotionally. Something I've learned with my emotional baggage is that with the act of true forgiveness, God removes the pain from those memories. He doesn't remove the memory but the pain associated with it. In this way, we can learn more easily.

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Mary A. Felkins
Mary A. Felkins
Sep 15, 2023
Replying to

That’s great perspective—He removes the pain associated with the memory. Thank you, JD!

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Carol Bowman
Carol Bowman
Sep 13, 2023

Love this!!! Very timely, as I am going to a high school reunion this weekend, and have be perusing items I need to toss afterwards. I appreciate your perspective and encouragement!

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Mary A. Felkins
Mary A. Felkins
Sep 15, 2023
Replying to

How wonderful that you got this post before your reunion. It’s sooooo hard to let go of things from our past. I pray you’ll experience a pleasurable reunion!

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