Hoarder Disorder
Lysa TerKeurst

“Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything we need for enjoyment.” 1 Timothy 6:17 (NIV)

Have you fallen prey to the “Hoarder Disorder?” You’ve heard the old expression: “Save the Best for Last.” Well, “Here Today, Gone Tomorrow” is more like it as far as I’m concerned. It’s time to get rid of the mindset that we must collect all we can, store it away, and only use it on special occasions. instead we need to start savoring what we have today. I’m not talking about living a frivolous lifestyle where we make impulsive choices that hurt us in the long run. I’m simply talking about living each day to the fullest, putting to good use the little gifts that God allows us to enjoy whether we realize it or not.

Today’s Key Verse is a good reminder that we won’t be able to take what we’ve saved with us when we leave this earth. Life and possessions are uncertain, so God intended for them to be used for our enjoyment (gasp!!!) while we still have them. In fact, King Solomon reflected on this truth in Ecclesiastes 2:18-20 when he stated, “I hated all the things I had toiled for under the sun, because I must leave them to the one who comes after me. And who knows whether he will be a wise man or a fool? Yet he will have control over all the work into which I have poured my effort and skill under the sun.”

Think about that candle that cost a little too much but you just loved the way it smelled. So, you bought it but only burn it for company. No, no, no! Get it right now and burn it because you like the way it smells. And while you’re at it, go get a plate of the china you never use. Even if you’re just eating peanut butter and jelly on it, use it to make you or the kids feel a little special. And that nice outfit that just hangs in your closet for the once a year company party – go, put it on. You may look silly but you’re doing it in high style, with fancy china by candlelight!

A friend of mine was at a scrap booking party where she shared her hesitancy to use her “good” stickers. A lady quipped back at her, “You’ve got hoarder disorder and you need to get over it. Pull those stickers out right now and use them. What in the world are you really saving them for?”

How true! Do we really think when we are old and gray that there is going to be a contest at the old folks’ home where an announcer steps up to a squeaky microphone and says, “Whoever has the most unburned candles, mint condition china, best stickers and never worn out-of-date clothes wins an extra bingo chip.”

I don’t want an extra bingo chip fifty years from now. I want to be a happy person today. I want to be a mother with a smile on her face. I want to teach my kids that it doesn’t mean you are a worldly person if you happen to find a little joy in the things of this world that bring your heart comfort.

Wean yourself off hoarder disorder. Try having a date with your husband, or a night out with the girls. Do some scrap booking, get your hair done in the salon, or take a bubble bath after the kids are in bed. Plan something big like a vacation or a shopping trip for something you’ve saved up to buy. And don’t forget to invest yourself and your resources in eternal things that have lasting value. Don’t hoard – use what you have to bless others (and yourself) every now and then!

Dear Giver of every Good and Perfect Gift, thank You for providing me with so many blessings at my disposal. Your gifts are both eternal and for this life. Show me how I can use them with wisdom, and remind me that I can’t take them with me when I leave this world. I pray that others would be blessed because I chose to not hoard what I have. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Additional Resources:
The Bathtub is Overflowing but I Feel Drained by Lysa TerKeurst

Can Martha Have a Mary Christmas? by Brenda Poinsett

Application Steps:
Storing up possessions for no useful purpose besides simply having riches is considered hoarding – it’s being stingy. Stinginess means that a person can afford to use what they’ve saved up for but they simply won’t use it because they’ve placed more emphasis on what it will cost them to do so.

Reflection Points
Read Proverbs 23:5-7

In what ways might you have hoarder disorder?
Why might this be?
Do you think that being stingy is part of your refusal to put to good use what you have?
Make a list of all those things you are hoarding away. Perhaps it’s your gourmet hot chocolate. Perhaps it’s that unused set of satin sheets you’ve had forever. Perhaps it’s cold hard cash you’ve accumulated with no purpose in mind.
After you make your list, write down one way you can put each of your hoarded items to good use. Get busy having a little fun using them!

Power Verses:
Proverbs 22:9, “A generous man will himself be blessed, for he shares his food with the poor.” (NIV)

Proverbs 23:5-7, “Cast but a glance at riches, and they are gone, for they will surely sprout wings and fly off to the sky like and eagle. Do not eat the food of a stingy man, do not crave his delicacies; for he is the kind of man who is always thinking about the cost.” (NIV)

Acts 4:32, “All the believers were one in heart and mind. No one claimed that any of his possessions was his own, but they shared everything they had.” (NIV)

Matthew 6:19, “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal.” (NIV)

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6 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Lysa

Thanks for this article - it is so true for me right now- I guess I had been trying to use what finances I got on others and neglecting self then I went opposite and now thought of myself and neglected others- I have a balance now. I can't describe how excited I am about your beautifully designed and totally awesome site- the content too is excellent, keep up the great service, cheers, Kate

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Lysa,

I just joined the devotions, a friend forwarded one to me and now I am hooked. Today's devotion was written just for me I am convinced! Down to the last detail it is me to a "tee". So now I am going to get my china out of the closet, burn my favorite candles, take that bubble bath, and let my kids use up the crafts and stickers I have been hoarding up for when they are old and grey and don't care about them anymore! I really needed to hear this message. I try so hard to "save for later" that which I am afraid I won't be able to buy again later. Even if God does not provide the finances for me to "buy it later", I know He will give me joy and pleasure in something along the way. I am denying His Spirit by not enjoying what He has given me now. Thanks again, D'Evelyn

Anonymous Anonymous said...

praise the lord sistah! enjoy the shower everyday! it may cost a little but it is nothing compare to how you feel good n fresh all day long! ;) the lord's blessings :) floods all day/night long. i do not know many people that enjoy the shower in their home. i know i do and i feel the lord tickles me when the water runs/fall on my body. thank you sistah! we will meet for sure and you will know me by how i smell in heaven ;) lol!

Anonymous Virginia said...

I'm still confused about something. It looks like a great article, but I'm struggling with some decisions concerning the stuff I have right now, and what to do with that stuff. Example, why should I keep six outfits of clothes when all I need is one, so why not give it all away to someone who needs these clothes more than I do? I understand there's nothing wrong with having nice stuff- as long as you don't neglect the poor. So how does this work, if indeed there are millions around the world suffering in poverty, would it really be justifiable for me to even have a little bit of "nice things" when there are so many who have nothing?

Anonymous Anonymous said...

i beleive in sharing every blessing with those that God puts in my life. I don't beleive in hoarding. I especially don't beleive in having a room that no one can go in and touch except for guests. enjoy what God has given you. blessings are from God, and some blessings are to be shared!there are people in poverty, so we should give to the poor!God blesses us with enough for ourselves and for others. it's that simple!!!!!!!!!!!

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I really like this web site for me to read and truly learn! Thank you for keeping me in my e-box daily! Shirley Korth

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