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"God made man simple; man's complex problems are of his own devising." Ecclesiastes 7:30 JB
In 2010, the word i chose to focus on was simple or simplify. In some ways to simplify and declutter (which was my word for 2009) work hand in hand so maybe I was just building on that thought.
As I was talking to my Aunt Ruth on the phone, I had mentioned that I wanted to simplify things in my everyday life that I can sometimes make so complicated. She mentioned that she had a book at her house (Celebration of Discipline: The Path to Spiritual Growth by Richard J. Foster) that I could read and look through that talked about simplifying.
After reading the chapter on "The Discipline of Simplicity", I thought I would share the major points with you, look back at the posts from that year, and look at how I worked this into my own life.
So many times we think that by getting rid of things we will make our lives more simple, however, simplicity begins in the heart and is evidenced by outward actions.
Christ was not complicated at all.
He said come as you are, not come with all you have. If we come as we are, we will stand before him with nothing in our hands. So many times we carry around physical, emotional, and even spiritual baggage that weighs us down and keeps us from living a restful, stress-free life. When we realize that He is all we need to truly be satisfied, that is when we have reached what true simplicity is all about.
As part of an upcoming (review) series on this blog, I will be taking the following ten points from the chapter and delving into them in greater depth. I will also be applying these principles to my life and noting the changes that come from choosing the discipline of simplicity.
- Buy things for their usefulness rather than their status.
- Reject anything that is producing an addiction in you.
- Develop a habit of giving things away.
- Refuse to be propagandized by the custodians of modern gadgetry.
- Learn to enjoy things without owning them. (parks, libraries, beaches)
- Develop a deeper appreciation for the creation.
- Look with healthy skepticism at all "buy now, pay later" schemes.
- Obey Jesus' instructions about plain, honest speech.
- Reject anything that breeds the oppression of others.
- Shun anything that distracts you from seeking first the kingdom of God.