I still have a lot of penny pinching things floating around. Sometimes I write whole posts in my head when I am in bed, but I am too lazy to get up and write them down, then in the morning I find that all the clever phrases have been lost in the night.
There are times, I have been thinking, when the habit of living frugally can actually make one selfish and miserly. “I can’t invest too much of myself into this person… It might require more resources than I have, and then what would I do?” Not being too lavish with the butter can translate into not being too lavish with the love and care for others. “This is ours. We need to preserve it for a time of famine. Why don’t you go stand in line for your own butter?”
Pouring myself out to the point of poverty for the sake of another, that isn’t exactly thrift, now, is it? Finding someone more needy than me and giving them what I really want to keep for myself, my time and energy, that isn’t all that frugal either.
The One who restores our souls is not an ungracious skinflint. In our best, or worst, penny pinching moments, we need to remember that this cannot become a habit that pinches our very existence into grubbing meanness. Let us live as though we really believe that the One who asks us to share and give is the One who has the most extravagant storehouse of all! I am not talking about money, if you take my meaning, although that is certainly included.
Gabe’s uncle tells us a story from their newly wed days, when they were flat broke. Down to the last dollar, they decided to walk to the convenience store to spend it. Recklessly flinging caution aside, they bought malted milk balls and Mountain Dew. The story always delights me, as I imagine a very young, very green Amish couple marching to the store, breezily spending their last dime on totally unnecessary stuff.
These days we are in celebration mode. Gabe is done with school!!! The nursing class has their pinning ceremony tonight and commencement tomorrow night! We have lots of family and friends who are celebrating with us. Away with the oatmeal and bring out the sparkly!