Why Do People Hoard? :: by Lucie Kirouac

Do you know someone who seems to pack his or her home with unnecessary stuff and detritus, where it’s so packed that it’s almost impossible to move around, if not plain unsafe to live? A place keeping loved ones, relatives and friends away? I’m sure some of you have seen TV shows about hoarding—to your dismay!

Hoarders even keep rotten food in their fridges and kitchen cupboards. Cleaning doesn’t seem important to them. Being so unmotivated they let everything go to only get more discouraged and overwhelmed. Their places become a “ wonderland “ for cockroaches, bed bugs and parasites, perhaps even mice and rats… People get “ buried alive.”

Hoarders waste a lot of things as well as a lot of money. They compulsively buy things and clothes they really don’t need. Some items are dangerously flammable. Their home becomes unsafe to live in and extremely unhealthy. Some have even died under those conditions.

Hoarding is an obsessive-compulsive behavior. Many people face disorganization to a degree but keep things in case of needing them later. Or they associate them with memories that have sentimental value, making it hard to part from their stuff. There are other motivations hoarders share for being unable to stop getting more material things.

Those in the health field try to understand what pushes people to go to such extremes. Taking home items from a store, a garage sale or a flea market is a pleasant activity for a hoarder… but why? Specialists and searchers tend to view that disorder as a genetic, hereditary one or as a brain disorder. As always, the spiritual aspect of any negative behavior is rarely considered…

In our materialistic societies, the problem is more invasive. The more goods we get, the happier we feel. Owning becomes our security and reason for living. Parting from our toys and possessions that define our status, our personal worth and our place in society becomes almost impossible.

Material goods represent our safety and the remedy to all that affects our marital situations, our emotional issues, psychological problems, wounds, lack of love, attention, the death of a loved one or whatever else…

I personally view hoarding as a means to numb people of uncontrollable pain which pushes them into a state of despair, deep depression and even suicide.

Human beings live with voids they can’t fill. Some are more severe than others. Dissatisfaction, disappointments, disillusions and disenchantment lead sufferers to extremes to put an end to the agony with which they try to cope. Drugs of all kinds, alcohol, overeating or deprivation of food or overdoing just about anything that makes us unable to function, and are all very dangerous situations to deal with.

As humans we are quite creative at finding ways to preserve and protect ourselves to shut pain out of our conscious minds (which becomes a strong urge). Millions get involved in religions, satanic cults, groups and activities of all kinds to find meaning, purpose in their lives and a sense of belonging.

Hoarders, like anyone else, use things in excess to try dealing with their misery. It’s like getting on a “high” or “rush” that lasts only for a short while—like drugs. Their descent into their “hell” becomes a constant nightmare.

I’m of the persuasion that sufferers should avoid negative behaviors to end internal conflicts, and use much less victimizing of others to obtain what they desire.

Little do people realize that we’re spiritual beings, having been created by the Lord with an eternal soul. To be ignorant of this fact or dismiss it is destructive to our entire lives. We are meant to have an intimate relationship with our Creator, not with things…

Matthew 6:19- 20 says:

“Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”

Living to own possessions and lean on humans paves the way to a place of excluding Jesus Christ—who came to die a horrible death on the cross to take upon Himself our due judgment so we can have access to His forgiveness, and to spend eternity with Him. Please, don’t be indifferent to what He’s done for you out of pure grace and unconditional love.

Don’t toy with your soul. Accepting or rejecting Christ will determine your life on earth and into eternity.

Mark 8:36, 37 says:

“For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul.”

Here is a verse from the Bible that sums up the issue of having too much or not enough material things or necessities in our lives:

“Keep deception and lies from me. Give me neither poverty nor riches. Feed me with the food that is my portion, that I not be full and deny you and say ‘Who is the Lord?’ Or that I not be in want and steal and profane the name of my God” (Proverbs 30:8, 9).

Hoarders and all of you who can’t make sense of your lives, please accept the invitation made to you by Jesus Christ Himself to restore life through His forgiveness. He transforms the lives of all those who seek Him wholeheartedly.

“When Jesus heard this, he told them, ‘Healthy people don’t need a doctor; sick people do. I have come to call not those who think they are righteous, but those who know they are sinners’” (Matthew 9:12).

Here is His invitation to comfort you:

“Come to me , all who are weary and heavy-leaden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls” (Matthew 11:28, 29).

Lucie who cares! avec compassion…