Thursday, April 13, 2017

The Simple

Daily Gratitude Year 5- Day 103: Today, I am grateful for the simple.

This image is a Liz Curtis Higgs quote and the image from Proverbs 31 ministries. What a great combination. 

My sister-in-love and I had a quick chat last night. Too many of our chats are quick - but we are all on the run and in a hurry to some finish line that remains elusive at times. 

The social and emotional demands of this life keep us feeling like every day is a dead run. There are always good things to be done, people who need care and nurturing (in all seasons of our life) and 24 hours feels too short. 

Jennifer and I ended the conversation with commitment to "keep it simple". Spoken out loud with a quick plan to follow through. It will allow us both more breathing room. At the end of the weekend, it will be a shared worship, shared meal and time together with family that will make it special. Not all the extras we both love to add to the mix, but enough. Truthfully, it will still be more than enough.

Prepared... yes... but more importantly...  planning to be fully present and engaged. Not checking of a list... but fully living in the moment granted by His grace. 

There are times I think that Satan does his best work in our lives, not through naughty temptations... but through unnecessary "good things" that keep us busy and distracted from His purpose. Liz Curtis Higgs says it so perfectly:

"Our calling is simple. Be still. Believe. Be ready." 

Be Still: "Be still and know that I AM God". -Psalm 46:10

Believe: "Because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved."  -Romans 10:10  

Be Ready: "But in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect" -1 Peter 3:15

Yes, the calling is simple... but keeping it simple is tough stuff.  Good thing we are "girls with swords" and have his Word to test us and keep us true. And... we can be each other's accountability accountants. (Oh dear, another math word. What is happening this week?) 

Today is Maundy Thursday. We remember the night Jesus shared the Last Supper with his disciples. He knew his time for fulfilling his mission was near. Time was short. 

"Now before the Feast of the Passover, when Jesus knew that his hour had come to depart out of this world to the Father, having loved his own who were in the world, he loved them to the end." -John 13:1

"He loved them to the end." How I adore that phrasing. These were his people. His friends who were family. They had shared his grief over his cousin John the Baptist and Lazarus. They had celebrated when "many believed". They had prayed with him, laughed with him, lived with him and learned to love better by his example. 

"A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another." -John 13:34

He validated that they had loved him well, but now, they must love each other in the same way. Without jealousy or a ranking system... just to love as Jesus loved. With a wild abandon... men need some adventure... and with joy. They had no clue what was to come, but he wanted them to remember his words. "Love one another, as I have loved you." 

They, too, needed to be reminded to keep it simple. In a nutshell, "Love me. Love everyone."

Jesus knew they were going to mess up along the way. He still... intentionally... chose them. 

He chooses us, too. Will we choose him back? Yes, it really is that simple. Voice our choice. To know Him... and to go for Him. 

Today, I am grateful for the simple.

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