Post-Christmas Toy Purging

January seems to be a natural time for a purging of toys, doesn’t it?  Christmas means new toys come in, so after Christmas means old toys must go out.  After all, there is only so much space in a house that can be devoted to toys–and only so much attention from a child that can be given to each one.  Too much of anything isn’t good.  Isn’t that what they say?

It’s funny…. I can remember when the sum of the toys in our household was little more than what would fill a small plastic bin.

8-month old Abel with his entire toy collection (Picture taken 11/8/06)

Four years and three more children later, our toy collection fills four 21-gallon storage tubs–and that’s just what’s in storage… after this January’s toy purging….

I have filled one 21-gallon tub, one medium-sized box. and one trash bag with toys to be donated/given away; but the truth is that another 50% of what’s in storage could probably be eliminated without interfering with my childrens’ quality of play.  Like most of us Americans, they certainly have more than they need.  But, unlike many Americans, they certainly are thankful for what they have.

At bedtime last night, we and the kids, as usual, took our turns praying; and it was Amariah’s prayer that stood out to me the most.  As she, without prompting, thanked God for specific toy after specific toy, I couldn’t help but smile.  My heart was made glad at the sound of such a simple, innocent, yet important prayer.

Amariah’s grateful, loving, and content attitude toward her toys makes me think of Paul’s statement in Philippians 4:11b-12a.

“I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am.  I know how to get along with humble means, and I also know how to live in prosperity.”

I believe that my sweet little Amariah would be just as content to have the number of toys that Abel had in the picture above as she is to have all that she can play with and more.  What a sweet example of thankfulness and contentment she sets unawares.

As for the excess of toys still sitting in my storage area?  Well, I think another purging session may be in order sometime before next January. :-)

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