Sunday, my Dad and I were with 300,000 people at the Indy 500. 24 hours later, we sat on the porch of a retirement village with my 92-year-old Grandma. We went from noise and chaos, to silence and serenity. It was hard for me at first. I wanted to be on my phone, or to start up a conversation, or just do SOMETHING! But we did nothing. The three of us sat there, and felt the warm air, and enjoyed being in each other’s presence — a reminder to simplify.
It reminded me of growing up in suburban Pittsburgh.
On hot summer days, my Mom, my Great Aunt Mary and I would sit in folding chairs in our driveway with a cool lemonade. There wasn’t much silence then, with lots of stories and laughter but there was a simplicity. We didn’t really need anything else.
It made me realize that most of the time, I am driven by one of two things:
- 1. Being productive.
- 2. Being entertained.
Productivity is good.
In fact God commands us to be productive! It’s been part of His plan since the very beginning!
But when I am driven to ALWAYS be DOING something productive, it can steal my joy and contentment. I am anxious and always looking for the next thing to accomplish. I’m not doing what God asks us to do in Psalm 46:10.
Enjoying entertainment can be fine, when it promotes relationship.
Going to a game together or enjoying a good meal with a friend, is very uplifting to all involved! But when all I am thinking about is that next movie, or show, or meal or game, I am making entertainment an idol, and that becomes more important than God in my thoughts and actions.
So, I am introducing a third ‘driving force’ into my life. Actually, I just decided that I need to make it number 1.
I must Be still and know that He is God. In doing so, I can truly honor Him.
This summer, that means cutting off Netflix, so that my family gets my attention, and not the next show in ‘Legends of Tomorrow.” It also includes starting my day in silence, so that I can center my day on God. To be honest, that seems like a huge challenge with kids that want to get up and play and start the day. But it will be my goal each morning.
We are all on a journey. The more we can simplify our lives, and fix our eyes on Jesus, the more peace, contentment, and joy, we will find.
Would you join me on living a Simple Life? What does that mean for you?