Nov 16, 2016

Real Simple...

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“Come, all you who are thirsty,
    come to the waters;
and you who have no money,
    come, buy and eat!
Come, buy wine and milk
    without money and without cost.
Why spend money on what is not bread,
    and your labor on what does not satisfy?
Listen, listen to me, and eat what is good,
    and you will delight in the richest of fare.
Give ear and come to me...'
Isaiah 55:1-3

My mother-in-law gets me a subscription to a magazine called "Real Simple" every year. I love it.

However, I have noticed that I don't have as much time to read it anymore. I used to know exactly when it would come, and I could not wait to hole myself up in my room [or bathroom, or anywhere I could escape] and read it.

My life has become not real simple.

Too many irons in the fire. Too much activity. Not enough simple.

As I pondered the thought of simplifying things in my life, my mind went to the way things used to be.

I used to scrapbook my children's lives. Who has time for that anymore?

I used to devour cookbooks and write down the recipes on a note card if I found a recipe I loved. Now, the internet will find me the best and quickest recipe and will even create my shopping list!

I used to sit down and write cards to people. This is one of my favorite things to do. However, I don't even seem to have time to do this anymore.

I used to call my friends and have the best talks as I sat in the long car pool lines. Now, I scroll through social media or text a line or two to a few friends.

My life has become abbreviated.

You would think this would mean, "simplified". But, it's not.

I have a feeling you can relate. I have had this conversation with many friends. We all seem to long for simple. Yet, cannot seem to find it.

So, what's the deal? Is simple out of reach anymore?

Or, are we just so used to living in clutter, and chaos, and fast-paced living that we have forgotten what simple looks like.

As I read the New Testament and the life of Jesus, I am constantly reminded of what simple looks like. Jesus had one purpose. He wasn't too fussy, or extravagant or require a whole lot of "stuff".

In fact, He was quite the opposite. He made it His ambition to live a live of fullness without fluff.

His life was not loud and boisterous and in your face...

His life was quiet, meek, humble, and hidden.

Often, He escaped from the crowds. He longed to be with His Father in prayer.

Jesus wasn't trying to fit in with the "right people", or keep up with the latest trends.

Jesus lived His life to heal others. To minister to the lost, broken, destitute, and rejected.

Jesus had one simple goal: Others.

Life can get simple real quick when we make serving others and seeking God above all else our priority.

The other "things" that clutter us up fall by the wayside.

We won't get hung up on trying to impress the world, or please people.

Simple living requires a simple focus.

This verse right here says it all.

"make it your ambition to lead a quiet life: You should mind your own business and work with your hands..." 1 Thessalonians 4:11

What if our ambition was to lead a simple, quiet life? What if we minded our own business and tended to our own flock?

Things would look a lot different, wouldn't they?

We spend so much time trying to be noticed...

We spend so much time trying to fix things and fix people...

We spend so much time making sure our voices are heard, our faces are seen, and that we are not forgotten....

Then, we end up miserable.

We end up with a gaping hole of anxiety and restlessness.

A simple life requires a life devoted to the service of One.

When He is our only Master, our work each day is much lighter.

Simple living is not out of date.

It is available, we just have to get rid of the excess keeping it from our reach.

 Simple living is freedom.

Freedom from the bondage of people, time, and accumulating stuff.

What's cluttering up your life and keeping you from simple living?

Pray and ask God to help you get to the simple place.

It's a place where you won't find a whole crowd of folks. You can spread out here and have plenty of room.

Stretch out your legs and enjoy. Finally.


reading my magazine,


jill