A few years ago, God sort of began to wreck me a bit. With a move to a different church and then with a few well-timed books, my outlook slowly started to change. I’d say reading Crazy Love and Radical both did quite the number on me in regards to where our time and finances were going and how I looked at our possessions. In the midst of that, Dani and I started The Sisterhood of the Traveling Belt. I won’t say that all my materialism has disappeared but God is still at work.
I’d read Jen Hatmaker’s book Interrupted and then watched as her new book 7: An Experimental Mutiny Against Excess debuted. I followed Marla Taviano’s read-along but still didn’t read the book. For whatever reason, I just didn’t feel it was my time. And then Katrina from The Poorganic Life posted about needing another blogger to help blog through the book this summer and it was like a light bulb moment and I knew I needed to be involved. It was time to meet 7.
The point of 7 is to look at 7 areas of excess in our lives and then cut it out all while realizing how we could help others with the excess and be more grateful for what we did have. It’s right on par with what God had been doing in me. She’s like a soul sister I’ve never met. I mean, really. Eating more whole foods. Wondering why we dress up for church. Putting a cap on what we spend. Watching too much TV. All these things and more hit home. Jen took it a step (or 800) further and spent 7 months on each of the 7 areas doing some cut-throat activities that challenged her. One month she only ate 7 ingredients in all her meals. In another, she only wore 7 items of clothing. And on and on it went.
So Katrina is having us read the book and then do 7 mini challenges for the summer called Summer of 7. She has put together 7 bloggers that will all attempt a week of challenge from each category and then we each take a week to blog about one area. Mine is possessions. I feel it’s pretty fitting.
The rules are pretty much up to each person. She realized pretty fast that with everyone’s schedule it’d almost be impossible to enforce the same schedule for everyone. I’ve put together my own schedule. My plan is to roughly do the challenge from Saturday to Friday and then post about it the following Tuesday. Here’s what we’re looking at:
June 2-8 FOOD – I feel like I’ve been on one big food challenge since we went gluten free the past few months. I’ve learned so much about food and I honestly don’t feel like food is a huge sore spot of excess for me right now. So for this week, I’m doing no take-out, no desserts and only water to drink. Those are probably the 3 areas in which I do see excess.
June 10-16 STRESS – I’m going to do the 7 prayers in the book. We will be on vacation this week so I think it’s the perfect time to de-stress.
June 17-24 POSSESSIONS – I’ve been wanting to do a major clean-out of the house and I think it’s time. I want to take a day to do one room and then at the end I will do something…either a yard sale for Jen Hatmaker’s homes in Haiti, donate to Goodwill or give to individuals as needed.
June 25-30 CLOTHES – I will wear 7 articles of clothing all week. To be honest, being in the same jean shorts and a t-shirt all week isn’t that challenging for me, so I’m going to also go without makeup all week too. Hello, my name is Amy and I’m a Mary Kay consultant.
July 1-7 SPENDING – I’m planning to only buy groceries this week. No Amazon, no Target, no Wal-Mart, no CVS, etc. Now this is something FOR ME. If the girls need Tylenol or something, I’m buying it.
There will be a gap here. It’s birthday week in this house.
July 21-July 27 WASTE – I’ve been wanting to start composting and I think this is the right week to start.
July 28-Aug 3 MEDIA – No blogging, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Reader, general browsing, no TV and no cell phone use except for calls/texting.
OK, so I would LOVE it if some of you would join me? Surely there are some of you that want to cut some excess out of your life and like a good challenge? Don’t want to do all 7? Sure! Pick one area that is a sore spot (not the easy one!) and join up. Katrina has a linky over here where you can post an intro and then sub-pages so we can link up our individual category posts as well. Below is the *same* linky that you can enter it without hopping over to hers!