Living Simply

I've been away, silent. I haven't had much to say. Today I do.

Our church is running a campaign on Living Simply this month. Big talks coming.

I've studied the topic before and I've been deeply impressed with some of the messages, so I can anticipate some of what is coming in the sermons. I've already read a message or two that have accompanied the church staff's campaign.

Living Simply. Not a bad concept. Not a bad pitch. Especially coming from sermons in today's complicated world. Life is stressful. Life is busy. Life is short and do we really have time to waste minutes and hours doing things that aren't important or necessary?

That's where the simple message of living simple can have an appeal to busy people -- return to the simple life of simple pleasures, deeper relationships and meaningful, not wasted, moments. Spend less, live more.

Ah, but this topic is frought with mine fields of simplistic answers and anything but simple motives.

There are people who sincerely want to help others. They want to free up the overstressed, overbusy person. They want to redistribute time and talent to help others -- isn't that what Jesus taught others in his ministry during this life on Earth? And he lived it, he didn't own a home or many possessions.

And then there are people who use the messages to further their own agendas or feather their nests.

How many people take up a Live Simply message and live it?

Living Simply messages that I think have real merit are ones that shift the focus from things to relationship, that is a closer relationship to the One who loves us.

Living Simply messages that harp on how much time we spend staring at the TV, listening to electronic devices, staring into computer screens or peering into Ipods or cell phones only partially hit the mark. It isn't technology or things that are the real problem, it is our attachment to them. The real question is why we do what we do? Living Simply .... for who? for what? and why?

What do you think?

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