a journey to simple living…

Life is a vapor.  This phrase has visited me time and time again over the past few months.  God has been stirring up our family.  Like a tiny breeze whipping up dead leaves, it started small with gentle stirrings in my heart.  He would show me my sin and lead me to repentance.  He’s guided me in a daily reading time to be in the Word – starting anew with Genesis.  Like the pruning of a vine, He has chiseled away at my life to show me His sovereignty, mercy and grace.  And I feel awakened by His call. 

There have been times in my life when I could clearly see God moving and times when He has been completely silent.  I have found this same pattern throughout the old testament as I’ve been reading this summer.  I do find comfort in that; knowing that sometimes God is silent.  We are to remain faithful and wait, though I have a tendency to find my own rabbit trails during these times!  (It seems I’m also not alone in that.)  But it’s difficult to wait on God.  Sin quickly finds its way in and brings a false comfort.  Pretty soon, God and his mercy are forgotten.  Eventually, the weight of sin is too much to bare and we’re looking around wondering what happened to God.  Where did He go?  We are His children so why isn’t He here, answering our cries for help?  Now His mercy, His holiness, His faithfulness are faint memories and we can no longer remember what His peace feels like.  We’ve forgotten our God.

This is when He grows us.  Our vision becomes smudged with the dirt of this world and our clear vision of Christ is dulled, then covered up like a window that’s been ‘soaped’.  These are the times that make me feel like a little kid at a big fair.  There’s so much to see, distracting my attention – pleasing smells, colorful lights, strange and beautiful things to ogle at.  My hand slips out of the protection of my Father for just a brief moment… Next thing I know I’m alone in the midst of a strange scary place.  People all around and I don’t recognize a single one of them.  Dad is nowhere to be found.  As I stand there in fear and panic, not a soul seems to notice. 

This is where God put me recently.  He roused me from my worldly ambitions with a tap on the shoulder as if to say, “where are you going?”  “What are you doing here? This isn’t where I left you.”  And I’m standing here in panic, realizing what I’ve done.  I see that my ‘brief moment of distraction’ has taken me way off course.  As a matter of fact,  I had been so blinded by the world that I couldn’t see through that soapy window at all.  As I wandered around with my near-sighted vision as though He had completely disappeared, of course He was right there all the time.  He never changes, never leaves; always clings to me no matter how far I stray.  

Well, I literally woke in a panic.  After months of God’s nudging being met by my ignorance, it was clear that nudges weren’t working.  I became filled with panic, urgency, an intense desperateness.  God was talking and I needed to listen. 

Looking back, I can see clearly some of the things God was calling me to.  It was as if He were working up to this moment.  He led me to people, places, stories, Bible passages… I’m amazed as I think about how, week after week, He would speak to me about an area of my life and confirm them in Sunday service or in my daily readings. 

And so this is where I am.  It’s time for a new season.  I feel certain of His bringing me here and while I don’t know where exactly He’s leading, all I can do for now is follow the promptings in my heart.  I know He’s guiding me. 

This is the story of my journey into simple living.  My prayer is that readers will find God’s grace and peace in some small way in these pages. 



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