No Spend Month — Greater Than

$1043.74 is greater than $93.  That’s our total for non-essential spending from July 2-July 31.

In several ways, this whole month was about what is greater than.

Relationships are greater than rules.

This month was an experiment in self-imposed rules, that we readily broke with people we cared about and don’t get to see much.  We ate 6 restaurant meals–5 with friends, and one together to celebrate our healthy and gender revealing mid-pregnancy sonogram.  (Still not telling…but I will on August 12.)

Several of you have asked if we have a plan for the unspent funds.  Some will go into savings, and some will be gifted to dear ministry friends.  The letter sharing some new opportunities for their family and ministry arrived, interestingly, on June 29.  We would have missed the blessing of responding quite the same way without this month.

On purpose is greater than mindless.

I never thought it would happen.  That I would stop to consider why I wanted to buy something and if I really wanted to lose the cost-opportunity ratio in that purchase.

The cost-opportunity ratio, as explained to me by a professor once, is the recognition that something doesn’t just cost a certain amount of money.  It costs the opportunity to buy something else with that money.  I’m not just spending $30 on a dress at Target, I’m also choosing to not have $30 to spend on something else later on.

I have largely ignored this principle until this month.

Quality time is greater than consumption.  

This month was also about getting out of the habit of looking for items to entertain or amuse or complete.  My house would be nicer with this. My wardrobe would be more rounded with that.  It’d be fun to go here or there.  I waste so much energy looking for the next thing to fill my life.  For a few weeks, I just stopped looking.

It’s still true that my feet would look better with a pedicure, though.

Denial is sometimes greater than indulgence.

That no Spend Month is entirely a construct doesn’t bother me.  Sometimes it’s good to do something just because, to see what happens.  And I think what happened was well worth it.

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