~ A Prize Possession…
One day a very wealthy father took his son on a trip to the country for the sole purpose of showing his son how it was to be poor. They spent a few days and nights on the farm of what would be considered a very poor family.
After their return from the trip, the father asked his son how he liked the trip. “It was great, Dad,” the son replied. “Did you see how poor people can be?” the father asked. “Oh Yeah,” said the son.
“So what did you learn from the trip?” asked the father. The son answered, “I saw that we have one dog and they had four. We have a pool that reaches to the middle of our garden and they have a creek that has no end. We have imported lanterns in our garden and they have the stars at night. Our patio reaches to the front yard and they have the whole horizon.
We have a small piece of land to live on and they have fields that go beyond our sight. We have servants who serve us, but they serve others.
We buy our food, but they grow theirs. We have walls around our property to protect us, they have friends to protect them.” The boy’s father was speechless. Then his son added, “It showed me how poor we are.”
Too many times we forget what we have and concentrate on what we don’t have. What is one person’s worthless object is another’s prize possession. It is all based on one’s perspective.
I’m thankful for what I have, not jealous for what I don’t. The more I understand about where I am, and understand what it is I want and need for my family and my children, the better I am able to make good decisions as a Husband and a Parent. When I’m aware of how my decisions affect others, I’m better able to make ones that are not only good for me and my family, but good for my community, my region, my country, and even our planet. Sometimes it takes the perspective of a child to remind us what’s important.
Here are some interesting comparisons:
$7000 Per Month 2 Bedroom In New York City VS $1350 Per Month For A 2400 Sq. Ft. Farmhouse On 8+ Acres In The Catskills New York
Usually the decisions we make about where to live and where to work are made around many factors. Those often include family members, friends, job, church, continuity of schools for the kids, sports, etc. Different ages and stages in life lead to different types of decisions. One who is freshly out of high school is thinking about different things than the family with their third baby on the way. The couple who’s last child gets married and leaves the nest is suddenly left with decisions about downsizing, keeping the family home, or what to do from here.
When the budget is good, it can be more worth your time to hire help and pay full price for things. When you have time on your hands, it’s usually better to do things yourself and save money. When I look back at the stages of my life, I was in the hardest of times when I graduated from college. I was in debt up to my ears, and had lived in the dorms, so it was my first time out on my own. I taught piano to a young lady who’s family lived in a mobile home, and commuted far to the country for her lessons. Her parents were very thrifty and knew where to get all the best prices on things. I learned about mis-tinted paint, and where to buy it for $1.00 per gallon. I learned about thrift stores, when they got their shipments in, and when they would drop prices to nothing to make room for more goods. I watched and learned from a family who had been in town long enough to build relationships and knew all the ins and outs of surviving on a small budget, that it carried me through every hard-time roller coaster of my life.
There are always going to be trade-offs. If you live in the city, you might be close to everything, and not spend much on gas. Living in the country might mean a lot of miles to the grocery store. That’s when growing your own food is even more appealing.
You can always keep an eye on the free section of Craigslist for curb alerts and great stuff when people are moving out. Just select your city and check it out! But watch out for bed bugs, and remember to clean it up before you bring it in the house. You’ll save a lot of headaches that way.
In the comments below, I would love to see the great deals you found on a home or at a garage sale or re-sale of sorts. Or share your story of hard times, and how you came through it…. or how you’re still in it. The advice and counsel of those who have been there often helps us to get through those times.
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Article originally published on Offgridquest.com
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