13 Dec 2006


Author: Bobby Valentine | Filed under: Bobby's World, Journey, Milwaukee, Personal, Tucson


Surely some person some where has either blessed or cursed the chaos. We need a little chaos, however, to remind us that the things of this age are not the most valuable. That is hard to believe at times!

You see over the last several days I have been packing books, books, and more books. At the “encouragement” of my beloved wife, Pamella, I have begun to divest myself of books. And how I despise that!

But I have been able to do it. At present I have probably divested over two thousand dollars in books. I found good homes for books on tanks, submarines, the Luftwaffe, a multi-volume history of the Civil War, missiles, Stalingrad, etc. I delivered five large boxes of books to Half Price Books this morning as well.

I gave away about six years of Leadership and half the printed editions of Wineskins. Gone are books on art, ancient wine and even my lone book on UFOs. I divested myself of Astronomy and Sky & Telescope going back to the mid-1980s. But I just could not bring myself to get rid of my Star Wars comics!!!

Moving reminds us of just how much “stuff” we collect, even when we are not collectors. I cannot say that getting rid of all those books has made me a better person. But perhaps they will bless others who seek to explore new horizons. And besides … I still have 27 boxes of books that I did not divest myself of. But I am learning to be nimble, 🙂

Bobby Valentine

19 Responses to “Divesting”

  1. brian Says:

    if you want to send some OT commentaries to NJ, I will pay for the shipping, I would hate for you to have to carry those all the way to AZ…


  2. MommyHAM Says:

    I do not envy your move. I hate moving. May God bless you as you seek to fulfill the prophecy of less becoming more 😉

  3. Bob Hendren Says:


    When I moved from Nashville I had 5 garage sales and ended up with more than I started with. Stuff has a life of its own and is the real secret weapon of the minions of chaos.

  4. Alan Says:

    Man I feel for you. I have made major moves 3 times in the last 10 years and had to divest of many books. I had a huge library 10 years ago. It was so hard to get rid of many of them but it was something that had to be done due to space in the truck. The feeling of divesting has not gone away. With a very much smaller library now I still look at it from time to time and think to myself I probably should do another “thinning”, I lay down and the feeling passes. A few days later when I trip over a stack of books on the floor the feeling to divest comes back.

  5. Joel Solliday Says:

    I sure can relate, Bobby. I have not been married long, but ‘divesting’ is something my wife has taken an avid interest in too, without sympathy for the pain it causes me, mind you. But she does let me do the divesting in the end, even if not at the rate she prefers.

    God’s speed, brother.

  6. Ancient Wanderer Says:

    I’m the ‘divester’ in my house to a fault. There are still books and other “items” I wish I had kept from two moves back.

    But it is great to get rid of stuff.

    And the #1 greatest thing about moving ……..
    YOU GET TO RE-INVENT YOURSELF. No one in AZ knows if you like chocolate or vanilla- go for it.

    I highly recommend wearing more plaid & flannel, that you start carrying a Yo-Yo and refer to yourself as “Bob”. That would be cool.


  7. Stoogelover Says:

    I’m slowly working through that and I’m not even moving. With several thousand books in my library, I have no choice but to get rid of many of them, but that’s a tough choice. I don’t evny you having to move … not from this perspective.

    My office is also a veritable museum to the Three Stooges. I have hundreds of Stooge “things” that some day will be on eBay. And then there are the guitars and amps and sound systems. And camping stuff. And tools. I think I’d rather die than move!

    BTW: My best regards to Bob Hendren! He holds a special place in my heart for many reasons.

  8. Matt Says:

    My family is big on clutter. My wife is not. My wife is the anti-clutter. Things get thrown away around here very easily. It was never that way growing up. There always seemed to be a “potential” use for just about anything. More often than not the use something had was really just to sit around and take up space that other bits of junk could have just as easily taken up.

    Having been on both sides of that fence, I think clutter creates chaos. It helps us live disorganized lives. We spend more time in process trying to figure out what we have and what we can use than actually getting things done.

  9. JD Says:

    Oh Hurricane Katrina blew in and divested us of most of our possessions – like it or not. And while I was building a giant pile of salt-water soaked stuff in my front yard I said to myself, “I do not want to own any more stuff.” As i sit here looking around there are piles of STUFF all around me. Some we salvaged, some was given to us (like the antique dining table I’m typing at), some we bought because we ‘needed’ it … and there’s no where to put it. I would like to be junkless…but I do not know how. I love coffee mugs … and books … and candles … and well… I’m disappointed in me. Anyway, get a bigger house so you’ll have room for more stuff.

  10. tim archer Says:

    Paul Faulkner used to recommend that you go through your stuff every six months as if you were about to move. Of course, we moved six months ago and still have over 20 (!) boxes of stuff in the garage.

    Materialistic… me?

    Grace and peace,

  11. Missionary's Missionary Says:

    Been there; done that! You have my deepest sympathy!

  12. Frank Bellizzi Says:

    Ugh! I was doing that a year ago, Bobby.

    One memory I’ll have for a long time is of me, standing at the curb, begging and thanking as the “trash-removal man” allowed me to refill our big green can about 3 times. Under pressure, I sometimes threw in things trusting that they weren’t items that I REALLY needed.

    I wondered. Would I have found some use in Texas for that ugly thingy I hadn’t seen in three years? No sooner had I asked the question than the can would jump straight off the ground, up the side of the truck, and upside down over the top. It was like I was snapping my fingers, sending my friends into space forever. For a hoarder, that’s both frightening and painful, a little taste of hell (with apologies to the annihilationists; and I hope you’re right, just in case).

    If you’ll pay the shipping, Bobby, I’ll take any of the other books and journals you might have. I’m not the Library of Congress. But I can dream.

  13. Jim Martin Says:

    OK–I’m impressed Bobby. I need to be doing just what you are doing (or have done already) with many of my books.

    I do feel for you. There is nothing quite like moving–fortunately. 🙂

  14. cwinwc Says:

    I don’t know if you can used this or not for it would depend on your wife. I had a friend who before moving into a new home they had built, promptly informed his wife that our county had passed a new ordinance banning the storage of boxes and bins in (very few basements in Florida) attics. She summarily pitched most of their items that they had stored in their old attic. You never know but by the sound of it your wife may need to use that story on you.

  15. Josh Says:

    God Bless you in your move. I’ve found from personal experience that moving can bring out the worst in everyone!

    Take care!

  16. Doug Doser Says:

    Welcome to AZ!

    We made the Midwest to Tucson move in June ’89 (Now in Tempe, AZ).

    You’ll build that library back up in no time. There’s this great used bookstore in Tucson called…Bookman’s (I think they may have 3 locations now). Also AZ does have Half Price Books as well…

    (Sent you a personal email – when you get settled, we need to meet – You can autograph my copy of Kingdom Come!)

    I’m sure you prayed deeply on this move – and God has led you to this decision. As much as I feel for WI’s loss, you moving is our (AZ’s) gain.

    Take care,

  17. Gallagher Says:


    I will pray for you! Before the family and I moved to SC, I sold and gave away 1/2 of my library. When we got to SC and bought our house, I sold another 1/2 and now I am selling another 1/2 (interested go to my site). I know what si like to let so many go, but now I have audiobooks and more Bible software. I have the traveling office.

    It is very searchable and very nice.

    Prayers for you my brother!

  18. Steve Puckett Says:

    God’s blessings on your move.

    Now we understand why Jesus said, “Give us today our daily bread,” and “Each day has enough trouble of its own.”


  19. Wade Tannehill Says:

    Thanks for the post. I wish I could say I was inspired, but as I keep telling my wife, “I might need that book someday–even though it’s been in the shrink wrap for five years. Besides, it was a great bargain.”

    Glad to know you kept the Star Wars comics. At least your priorities are in order. As you go into your new situation, May the Force be with You.

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