Do you remember the movie Wall-E? I love it. It really stuck with me.
Did you notice the difference between the environment Wall-E lived in on post-apocolyptic Earth, abandoned by humans and covered in their Stuff, and the environment of the space world the humans had escaped to?
There was something beautiful and interesting about Wall-E's world. The things he collected, what he retrieved, what he assigned value to when there was no one else there to say what should be valuable. The human's escape ship was sterile, detached from any sense of land or place or where their resources came from.
My husband and I met while in school to become pastors of sorts. We spent the last 12 years serving with a church here in Chicago, and last year we decided to begin a process of ending our time there, and changing our lifestyle. A huge value we wanted to flesh out in a more tangible way was becoming more attached to our place. We took a leap of faith, bought our first home, and left the position at the church.
This locally focused lifestyle has been a complete mind shift and the benefits are constantly surprising us. One of those surprising benefits is SPACE. You wouldn't think intentionally living within an limitation would give you more space. But there is so much more room in our lives now for the basics of being human that was slowly eaten away my traveling to and fro, to all the "best" things and places, being busy all the time, and always accumulating, never really being present and located and grounded. I see now how modern transit is both a blessing and a curse, giving us access and speed, but undercutting our need to walk, to have nowhere to go, to be found by the people who we live among. To live AMONG people, instead of everywhere. Connection with each other, our kids, and neighbors is all so much deeper and richer, even in the short time since we moved here last August (9 months ago now).
If you are interested in learning more about the benefits of living within limitations, here's a short list of books, some of which I have read and some I haven't, but all come HIGHLY recommended.