Dancing with Simplicity

Simple Living, Walking by Faith
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Tangles of Weeds: Can I Conquer Life’s Clutter?

  • January 25, 2020 9:47 am

Conquering Life’s Clutter

Tangles of Weeds: Can I Conquer Life’s Clutter?

Every year I say I am going to …de clutter my house, journal,
read more, bake, learn a new craft, and organize paper clutter in my office.
Sound familiar? You too? And every year it does not happen. Well, not most of
it anyway. It’s like the view from my kitchen window. Our window looks out on
our long, narrow yard. Our dogs have seen to it that no grass remains. Instead,
we have a lot of odd trees and weeds that like to keep coming back every year. A
tangled, hot mess. One year we finally paid to have the overgrowth removed. Everything
was pretty, though still not grassy. The yard cleaned up nicely. My view from
the kitchen window revealed a conquered yard! Despite the lack of much greenery,
it was something to behold… for a season. A very short season. Yard clutter.

So it is with our yearly, weekly, daily, goals, and plans. The
space is cleared. We make room in our homes, our schedules our lives, for all
sorts of things (including some me time.) Unfortunately, before we know it the
whole mess has grown back again. Weeds start filling the schedule, our
thoughts, our plans, choking out our attempts to dream some big
dreams. Bottom line, our attempts to simplify, declutter, get rid of the weeds,
are thwarted every time. Life clutter.

Now you might think this is a bad thing, but it really is no
surprise to God. He knows we have no good thing in us, and He knows our sin
entangles. A manicured yard doesn’t last long in a fallen world. The weeds will
come back. Cluttering tangled messes like anxiety, addictions, stress, depression,
pride, stubbornness, disobedience. Notice these are not all blatantly sinful things.
Sometimes, they are time robbers. Sometimes they simply drain you and zap your
energy. They grow in like those weeds, quickly, subtly, unnoticed. Just like in
my backyard. Creeping clutter.

Maybe, it’s time to
remember the weeds and clutter are simply going to be there. Instead of
being caught off guard, pluck them up and move on. If they grow back, tear them
down again. If it takes some repentance and confession, so be it Let
God’s presence fill up the overgrown messy weedy places. You may find
opposition coming back, and taking over. Opposition to your plans, dreams, and
choices comes in all sorts of forms. Though it is a battle you may deal with
every single day for the rest of your life, in the end He has conquered it all.
For now, try planting His Word in the barren yard. Do not let the yard take you
by surprise. Recognize it, expect it, and conquer it. Tear it down. Deal with
it when it grows and better yet, let Him be the gardener. Simplify your
life, by anticipating the opposition. Be prepared for it, and keep moving
forward. Behold the view from the window. He is making all things new.

II Cor 4:16 (MSG) So we’re not giving up. How could we! Even though on the
outside it often looks like things are falling apart on us, on the inside,
where God is making new life, not a day goes by without his unfolding grace.

Christmas…Cancer…Chaos…Calm

  • December 21, 2019 10:58 am

It has been A. Year. And then some.

When a chronic illness struck my husband in 2017, I thought it a bit much to endure. When cancer struck him in 2018, late in the year, I knew 2019 was not going to be easy.

Our finances are in a chaotic state. Some things are undone and have not been tended to. Nothing is as it was, and nothing is particularly in order. Diagnosis led to treatment, treatment led to one rather serious and now chronic complication. We don’t seem to be able to catch up, or catch our breath.

When you think about it, Christmas was chaotic. Jesus was born into messy circumstances, and I don’t just mean the stable. Just setting one toe into this fallen world is to be plunged into chaos. Politics, war, sickness, financial woes, cultural problems all went on then and continue today.

I guess it’s alright to feel out of whack. Out of breath, behind.

There is a Christmas star out there somewhere still. Rising above the world. Angels looking down. Peace on earth. Peace to chaotic, messy homes and families. Peace in financial problems. Peace with family illness overtaking you every day. Elusive peace? Only if it is a peace built on man. Peace that descended from above is different. And I will welcome His peace into my home, during this most chaotic year.

Luke 2:8-14 (NIV2011)
8  And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night.
9  An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified.
10  But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people.
11  Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord.
12  This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”
13  Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,
14  “Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.”

 

Happy Resurrection Day, Easter 2018

  • April 1, 2018 2:16 am

He is risen. If you are struggling with that this Easter, if life just doesn’t seem like this could possibly be true…well, that’s what faith is all about. If you need to learn more, please take time to click over to the Knowing God section of the side bar. Do you know Him? Things may be going along smoothly for you right now, and you don’t really think you have need of this hope. Or, maybe life is a complete train wreck and you’re desperate for His help. Just a reminder. He lives. He rose. He gave His life, enduring the cross, for you. And me. The greatest of sacrifices, from the heart of God. If you need an online Easter service check out Saddleback or Viewpoint church from CA. Two of my favorites!

Luke 24:1-12 (NASB77)
1   But on the first day of the week, at early dawn, they came to the tomb, bringing the spices which they had prepared.
2  And they found the stone rolled away from the tomb,
3  but when they entered, they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus.
4  And it happened that while they were perplexed about this, behold, two men suddenly stood near them in dazzling apparel;
5  and as the women were terrified and bowed their faces to the ground, the men said to them, “Why do you seek the living One among the dead?
6  ” He is not here, but He has risen. Remember how He spoke to you while He was still in Galilee,
7  saying that the Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, and be crucified, and the third day rise again.”
8  And they remembered His words,
9  and returned from the tomb and reported all these things to the eleven and to all the rest.
10  Now they were Mary Magdalene and Joanna and Mary the mother of James; also the other women with them were telling these things to the apostles.
11  And these words appeared to them as nonsense, and they would not believe them.
12  [ But Peter arose and ran to the tomb; stooping and looking in, he •saw the linen wrappings only; and he went away to his home, marveling at that which had happened.]

Your Business is His Business

  • December 5, 2017 4:17 pm

As a small business owner since 1986, I am on occasion under attack from those forces of darkness that we are warned about in Scripture.  I run as ethical a business as is humanly possible.  We all make mistakes, but as so many of you do in your business, we try to do the right thing.  In today’s world however, an anger is raging.  A Me First mentality is invading our lives while many of us are struggling just trying to keep their businesses going and to make ends meet. To do the right thing.  I know this is true, many of my online friends have expressed it.  Their prayer requests are filled with God honoring desires that seem to be thwarted.

Social media has made the business owner an open target for attack.  Maybe sometimes criticism is justified, and it can be welcome and put to good use.  But when your peaceful day, where you are simply struggling to do your job, pay your bills and care for your family, is disrupted from an other-world force of rage, or anger or subtle threats then what do you do?

He came to bring peace.  He came during this Christmas season to do so.  He is here to offer that, along with hope and His never ending love.  He told us to ask, to pray and believe He will answer.

Are you struggling with your career, your employment, your business?

Prayer requests welcome. Please feel free to post and share.  I’ll be adding some verses or share the ones you stand on.  Don’t let things ruin your day, your joy your peace. And if you do not know Him, please read the section on the sidebar that addresses that. This is unedited for the most part.  Real honest talk.  God knows your struggles, and I might just understand them too.  If you work hard, if you work to provide for your family.  You gotta keep hope alive. I don’t know much, but I know Him.  He truly is all in all, all that matters.  Keep fighting, keep serving, keep believing.

1 Timothy 4:10 (NIV2011)
10  That is why we labor and strive, because we have put our hope in the living God, who is the Savior of all people, and especially of those who believe.