I am a part of a community that values keeping things in common. The funny part about that is, as I observe my own habits changing and adjusting to that lifestyle, I want to have fewer things.
I’m not sure if it’s because
- subconsciously I don’t want to buy something if I have to share it, or if
- I feel like I need things less because I’m getting personal fullfillment from relationships, or if
- I assume that whatever the thing is that I want to buy is probably already owned by somebody else and I can borrow it.
It could be any of those things. My car broke down last week, brakes, transmission, electrical system (windows won’t roll down except for 1) etc. and I’ve ridden my bike all week. As I look for a car, and wonder how in the world I would pay for it, I can’t help but see that any $3,000 car purchase is competeing with my riding my bike 1.8 miles every day and putting that money into something else. Like my life. Like my life in community.
It really turns the Dave Ramsey stuff on it’s head. While the majority of the motivation for the Dave Ramsey stuff is guilt about credit card debt and goals to have a Disney vacation, I’m slowly being molded into having a budget and being thrifty because I care and love the people I’m sharing life with. Granted we don’t share checking accounts and give all our money away and all of that.
It’s not a legalism, it’s community.
You can do whatever you want, and as you share in the joy of being able to buy a friend a ticket to Avengers, or buy a few cases of Mountain Dew to share on your garden work day, you realize there is a joy in sharing that goes eons beyond the joy of tithing or giving.