(here's the exert from amazon about jen hatmaker's book, 7, so you have an idea of what i'm doing.)
American life can be excessive, to say the least. That’s what Jen Hatmaker had to admit after taking in hurricane victims who commented on the extravagance of her family’s upper middle class home. She once considered herself unmotivated by the lure of prosperity, but upon being called “rich” by an undeniably poor child, evidence to the contrary mounted, and a social experiment turned spiritual was born.
7 is the true story of how Jen (along with her husband and her children to varying degrees) took seven months, identified seven areas of excess, and made seven simple choices to fight back against the modern-day diseases of greed, materialism, and overindulgence.
Food. Clothes. Spending. Media. Possessions. Waste. Stress. They would spend thirty days on each topic, boiling it down to the number seven. Only eat seven foods, wear seven articles of clothing, and spend money in seven places. Eliminate use of seven media types, give away seven things each day for one month, adopt seven green habits, and observe “seven sacred pauses.” So, what’s the payoff from living a deeply reduced life? It’s the discovery of a greatly increased God—a call toward Christ-like simplicity and generosity that transcends social experiment to become a radically better existence.
i'm shooting for the stars choosing 2 areas of excess for october. i want to jump-start my diet AND we've gotta shed some stuff before we move! i have always been an over-achiever which often gets me over-committed and too stressed (hmmm...isn't stress one of the areas of excess? yeah, i can't wait for that month!)
i was going to try and change my 7 foods from the ones Jen chose, rather than copy exactly what she did. but you know what? as i was at my love/hate grocery monstrosity this evening, i sat and stared at black beans (my proposed substitute for sweet potatoes). am i really going to make several pots of black beans and not buy the sodium-rich ones in the can?
NO. NO. and NO. maybe if i had a hubby home and i could take longer prepping dinner, not having to play referee and trying to discourage morgan from walking, i could make black beans. wait, beans...don't you just throw them in a crock pot or pot and basically they cook themselves? yeah, i'm just making excuses now.
it's ok to copy her list, exactly. it's genius.
7 foods for oct: chicken, apples, whole-wheat bread, avocados, sweet potatoes, spinach, and eggs.
i went shopping yesterday and spent $71.51 on my foods. i think this will feed me for about 7-10 days.
- $42.17 for organic, antibiotic-free, free-range chicken breasts, drumsticks, and sliced chicken
- $3.97 for gala apples (no organic option at wally world tonight and
- $7.24 for whole-wheat pita pockets, sandwich thins and tortillas (thank you brandon hatmaker! for the love of Texas!)
- $7.44 for 6 avocados (yeah, probably will only last 4 days as i have to share with my avocado-lovin' girls)
- $5.71 for 8 sweet potatoes
- $4.98 for 10oz organic spinach
- i had organic, free-range, antibiotic-free eggs, but i'll need more next week.
i plan on taking january off when we move to SD, and my other 7 peeps, aka my "council" will be doing food that month. i'll drive to san diego, stop and eat krispy kreme donuts and in-and-out burgers, and i won't even feel bad about it. the council may disown me in january.
i'm also shedding stuff. we have too much. others don't have enough. Jesus wants me to give. simple as that.
i'll be giving away 7 things each day for the month of october.
what makes me sick to my stomach is i have a whole 24-foot POD in storage in MD. really....really?
when is enough, enough? (our pastor in austin wrote a book about this; you should totally check it out!) i've already packed up at least 50 pieces of the girls' winter clothing to drop off tomorrow at our church's clothes closet, which serves folks in our community who are in need of clothes. i haven't even gotten to MY closet of overabundance threads.
the point of 7 is to be less of Cort, and more of Jesus.
i can't wait to share with you how this journey will change, shape, stretch and make me cry big fat tears, because i just can't eat another bite of chicken. please pray for me, friends! i expect Jesus to show up in my life and all of my council members' lives in a BIG WAY!
my last meal tonight. an excellent organic piece of rib eye smothered with bearnaise sauce, paired with some vintage red wine. it was yummy.
did i mention i'm REALLY gonna miss coffee and red wine?? i'm gonna have the shakes without coffee and it's going to be real, real ugly the first few days.
i'll try really hard to update my blog weekly to sum up my 7 successes, failures, learnings, insights, and general whining.
thanks for following me and praying me through this journey! and thanks to my long-distance council, many of whom i don't even know...this is gonna rock!
and jen hatmaker, thanks for being obedient and faithful to see this experiment through. it's changing how people live and how we respond to God's call of more of Him in us, and less of us in us. thank you.