For over a year I’ve been asking God for the same thing — a bigger home.
I’ve thought of fifteen different ways to rephrase that statement so I don’t sound greedy or discontent, but it’s the truth: I want a bigger home.
I’ve struggled with our small space and all the juggling that comes with four kids sharing one room and only one common living space for cooped up little ones with an abundance of energy.
Summer is our saving grace, a season when we explode from our home, taking advantage of good weather and a yard in which to run. Nice weather equals more space to host friends and families and the community we’ve missed. The amount of time we spend outside makes me wonder how we ever make it through the winter!
But for as many reasons as I desire a bigger home — and ministry potential is at the top of the list — God has reminded me of the many blessings He has given in the gift of a smaller home.
On the days when I’m itching for more space and struggling to be content, I think of the many benefits that come with living in a small home.
6 Benefits of Living in a Smaller Home
Easier to simplify —
Living in a small home forces us to purge junk and live with less stuff (toy rotation, clothes rotation, less laundry). My natural inclination is to save (hoard?) everything.
I think I’ll need that sweater that fit five years ago but never regained its shape after I accidentally threw it in the dryer, but the reality is, I’ll never wear it again. Since I don’t have the space to store it, I’m not as tempted to keep it.
The same is true of toys, furniture, linens, and books — okay, maybe not books. Books are my weakness! Having a small home and few closets forces me to get rid of junk, hold on to less stuff, and clear clutter.
Easier to clean —
Fewer rooms and less stuff means I have less to clean — fewer toilets to scrub and floors to wash and mirrors to shine. Less time cleaning = more time to spend with my family!
Easier to maintain —
With fewer light bulbs to change and walls to patch, a smaller home has less space to keep up with and less space for all of the appliances and electronics I might want to own. The result? Fewer items to maintain, fix, or replace, saving time, energy, and money!
Easier to keep an eye on the kids —
I definitely don’t need to worry about what’s happening two floors up while I’m sorting bins in the basement. In my small home, everything and everyone is within ear shot. Not only does our small space make it easier for me to keep an eye and ear on little ones, it cuts down on how much chasing I have to do!
Easier to live within our means —
Because our space is limited, I am not constantly looking for new furniture, appliances or other things to purchase. We simply don’t have the space to put any extras! We also save on heating, cooling, and electricity costs.
Easier to stick together —
This one might be last on the list, but it’s the one with the biggest benefit. Many times I complain that our small space hurts our relationships because we often feel crowded or in the way. The truth, though, is that our small space brings us together.
With few places to escape, we are forced to not only work through our feelings and deal with our issues but we also do more activities and everyday chores together. Of course for this to work, we have to be intentional and work through our issues rather than avoid them, but as uncomfortable as conflict can sometimes be, when we face it with grace and God’s guidance, our relationships grow. Our small space forces us to face one another rather than run away.
As much as I would love to have a little bit more space for our family, God has reminded me of the many blessings of living in a small home. Through Him, I can be content whatever my circumstances, knowing He provides what we need when we need it.
What about you — have you ever struggled with your living space?
Choosing contentment with you,