Friday, September 19, 2008

What does it mean to have enough?

I have been having an on going discussion with my siblings about politics. One sibling commented that "People under the $116,000 don't really pay taxes anyway - so why should they get a break. " Whoa! WE have never cleared that much money in a tax year. We live pretty well, I think, but we do pay a great deal in taxes. We don't have anything to write off- our children are grown, the feds do not consider the amount that I spend on my students significant enough to write off, we do not have a mortgage(a decision we made long ago), we contribute to IRAs, we do not have a business so we cannot write off our car or our gas or our laundry room as an office, we do not farm. When it comes to the end of the day- we usually owe taxes- no loop holes for us.
Still, we have enough. We get to go and visit children when they need us. Scott can stay home and care for the house and the land and, frankly, relax from his years of toil. Our children are safely on their way to careers that will keep them safe and fed. We are all educated. We love the Lord. We are all healthy. Our sisters feel comfortable to call and chat.
We began to ride the fast track a few years ago. We grew apart. We felt uncared for. We began to seek comfort in going out to eat and drink. It did not work for us.
Sometimes, I miss going to the country club, buying nice clothes or entertaining with style. One of the reasons we moved to Kansas was to take us out of the circle of trying to keep up with the siblings. There is nothing wrong with their way of life. Most of them have found a good medium between what we have and what we left behind. It works for them and I am proud of the ones that it does....but it was not for us.
Where does that leave us? Are we less likely to get things from inheritance because we seem to "need" less, seems so. I think we have enough----but what really is enough? And what is too much?


Teresa said...

Great post Janette. I have been thinking about this alot lately as well.

RAnn said...

Enough--your needs for food, clothig, shelter and healthcare are met.

Too much--anything beyond a need, the acquistion of which causes problems for you, your family or others.

In other words, you need a house, apartment or some other place to live. You don't need a mansion, but if you have a job that pays mansion income, and doesn't cause family problems, then a mansion isn't "too much". OTOH, if you have a basic house and the only way you can afford a better-than-basic house is to get over your head in debt, or work all the time, then that better-than-basic house is too much.

ancient one said...

When you have the LORD, you have enough. HE will see that your needs will be met. Isn't that just soo wonderful? Makes for contentment! This is a great post!!

Debbie in CA : ) said...

Such a sweet and straighforward post. Like Paul, I have experienced little and much in my lifetime. God's guidance has led us to "enough" and it is the best we've ever lived. The peace of mind in knowing my treasure is in Heaven and my debts are paid comforts me in those instances when my self-focused-side says "Hey ... look at that ..." Siblings, friends, and others all around may not understand, but the "peace that passes understanding" won't be understood. (Right?) The days of striving for more and the "right" more are far behind me (praise God); when our boys (handicapped twins) came into our life they shook it all up and God put it right where it belonged. Though I still struggle, I go to the Rock and I find peace without taking on any debt. Good economics God's way . . . His abundance is enough for me. : )