Will It Satisfy?

If I clean out my closet and leave nothing in there but my essentials…
If I say “no” to things that don’t really matter but just cause more busyness…
If I live my life intentionally, stopping to be in the moments…
If I simplify and modify will it satisfy?
Attempting to get the balance right isn’t easy.
I am trying.

“WITHOUT GRACE, MINIMALISM IS ANOTHER METRIC FOR PERFECTION.”
― Erin LoechnerChasing Slow: Courage to Journey Off the Beaten Path

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Cherish The Simple Things

Twenty-four hours in a day. We each have the same amount of time. Many times we find ourselves overbooked and under satisfied with the way we spend our moments. I am attempting to simplify my life, not by the purging of my possessions, but by the changing of my perspective. When the schedule becomes too full, life becomes less about living and more about lacking. Life was never meant to be lived as an emergency.

Slowing down to give myself space to breathe, to think, to do those things I enjoy. Shouldn’t that be the majority of what makes up this journey? Yes, we all have things we must do, responsibilities, routines, but they should never be to the detriment of the moments that allow us to really live, laugh, love, and be in awe.
Psalm 118:24 “This is the day which the Lord hath made. We will rejoice and be glad in it”.

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Learning To Simplify

Hilly landscape in Val d'Orcia.

Image via Wikipedia

It started this morning. I’ve got things on my mind. Schedules. Dates. Things coming up. Holiday events. Planning. I have much to do before the end of the year. It occurred to me this morning that it’s already NOVEMBER 2nd! Two months from now we will already be into the new year. Good grief! Where does the time go? What moments have I let slip by because I’m always thinking about tomorrow. Or next week. Or next month. Or a year from now…

Breathe.

Sigh.

It’s happening again. I feel like a freight train that is out of control, barreling down the tracks, heading for an unknown destination….one bump and I’ll be derailed.

Breathe again.

Another sigh.

I was looking through a favorite house site, and noticed a clip from the movie, Under The Tuscan Sun. Regardless of how one feels about this movie, it does give a good example of a woman who was looking for something different for her life. She left the States, and while vacationing in Italy, bought and restored a rundown house in Tuscany. She found friendship, laughter, and meaning for her life, in the midst of it all. Her life became much more simple.

After seeing that clip, I took a few minutes to dig through my old journals until I found the one that I was looking for. A small black book, with a simple title. “SIMPLIFY”.  I think that says it all. I looked back through it to see what I had written. It was sort of a workbook of how to simplify. I smiled at some of the things I had written, and shook my head at others. Simplifying is a process…and, I am not there just yet.

“I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived. I wanted to live deep and suck all the marrow of life.” —Henry David Thoreau, Walden

Earlier this year, I read Ann Voskamp’s, One Thousand Gifts. She talks a lot about slowing down, savoring each moment, and giving thanks. I truly enjoyed her book. It has been a “life changer” for me, not because I have it all down perfectly, but because that is something that I long for. It helps to know that there are other people out there that feel the same way.

The Lord tells me in His word not to worry.

Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.  Matthew 6:34  NIV

I will be completely honest and tell you that I struggle with that verse. I know that God loves me more than the birds of the air, and the flowers of the fields, but when I’m facing decisions and feeling pressed for time, it’s easier to worry. Not that it does one bit of good, mind you, but I never said it made sense.

Another deeper sigh.

The more I try not to worry, to deliberately simplify, the more anxious I get. Sometimes it seems like a vicious cycle.

I think Ann was onto something …it’s impossible to worry if one is giving thanks to God. If I’m busy thanking Him for all things, I won’t have time to worry about the small stuff. It seems so simple, but really it is true. It is a discipline, though.

A discipline that  I continue to work on because I want this so badly.