hmm…i’m pretty curious about the person who left the comment asking me about simplicity, and it’s a good question. in case you haven’t read it, they asked:
“How would one know that you value simplicity? Where is the evidence to convict you of simplicity? (I am not alleging that you do not value it; I just want to know what you feel are the most important indicators of it in your life).”
excellent question, stranger! i do value simplicity, but i think i’ve been fairly clear that it’s been a bit of a struggle for me the past couple of years, as consumerism has increasingly seeped into my life. of course, that statement also makes the assumption that simplicity is all about money and things, which i think is erroneous. the best definition of simplicity i’ve heard is one that we worked with at the community house a few years ago: “a single-mindedness of heart…” when it comes down to it, i want to display simplicity in my life by having a simple focus – loving God and loving my neighbor. that’s what it boils down to. that said, i do believe that the way we consume resources is related to simplicity, and it’s often far easier to simplify and reduce our possessions than to singly focus our hearts…
you asked for evidence in my life that i value simplicity. on the material level, i try not to buy an excess of things. i buy most of my clothes at thrift or discount stores. i do most of my grocery shopping at save-a-lot. i cut my own hair. i try not to spend money impulsively. but, as i already mentioned, the entire area of simplicity/consumerism, etc., is a very current struggle in my life. you asked what i would consider the most important indicators of simplicity in my life. i’m not there yet, but the indicators i’m striving for would include what i’ve already discussed: 1) a single-focus of my heart; 2) a reduction of peripheral, fluffy things in my life (IMPORTANT NOTE: this does not mean that i believe we should own nothing. i do believe that having things of beauty in our lives is important for joy)
so, there you have it. my thoughts on simplicity today.
just an aside – i really, really like comments! i also like to know who’s expressing themselves. i won’t ignore annonymous comments, but please at least make up a pen name if you’re going to comment a lot and don’t want me to know who you are! 😉
another quick note while i’m bringing up housekeeping details: for everyone who has looked at pictures of blaze on my fotopage, thanks for the compliments on her beauty! somehow, though, most people seem to think she’s a boy. she’s not.
in other thoughts, i’ve been attempting to practice the discipline of “praying without ceasing,” and it’s pretty cool what can happen. i’m especially trying to practice being intentional about inviting God to be with me in sessions with my families. yesterday i had what felt like a pretty significant breakthrough with a 13 year old girl who wants absolutely nothing to do with therapists or counseling or processing. sometimes it’s easy to forget the power of simple, honest words that don’t pussyfoot around the truth. (back to simplicity again, it seems…)
enough for now. i love christmas – in one week, i’ll be arriving in philly to see my family. it’s the first time the four of us will be together at the same time for over a year and a half. hurrah!