Practicing Justice by Owning Less

Over at How to Talk Evangelical, Allison Vesterfelt discusses consumerism and justice in the West. She and her husband Darrell undertook a year-long experiment:

We decided to buy nothing new for a whole year, only used or second-hand. Instead of going to Target or IKEA to furnish our new apartment, we went to Goodwill and Salvation Army. We found furniture, trash cans, and even a used mattress. When my husband broke his iPhone we didn’t go replace it. When we needed a power strip, or warmer clothes for our new (freezing) Minnesota climate, we browsed the racks at thrift and second-hand stores until we found what we wanted.

Packing-light-sidebarHere’s what they learned:

First, we laid down our privilege and admitted how “rich” we really were.

Second, it forced us to take a consumer “pause” to think about our purchases.

Third, it reminded me I have choices.

Fourth, it reminded me I am not what I own.

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