I read Living Simply: Choosing Less in a World of More by Joanne Heim Easter weekend. It's a wonderful book that encourages and instructs us on how to live a simpler life. I know that's been a theme for me in my life lately.
Since staying home and raising Pumpkin is my full-time job, I find that I do have a lot simpler life than I did when I was working all the time outside the home. Now, sometimes I must confess to feeling like I am losing brain cells playing with the stacking cups (again) and that I am bored with board books, but I wouldn't trade this time with Pumpkin for anything. I certainly wouldn't want to go back to teaching and raise other peoples' children while paying someone else to raise mine, but that's just me.
Living Simply quotes many of my favorite books and story characters. She's also incorporates many of these stories and books into her family life. I love Joanne's practical ideas for creating a home life that you can truly love. Ladies, we are the ones that establish the tone of our home both in decorating and in attitude. Our children can only model what they see. Don't we want it to be a life of joy; serving God and serving our families? I do.
The book opens with 1 Thessalonians 4:11&12a "Make it your ambition to lead a quiet life, to mind your own business and to work with your hands, just as we told you, so that your daily life may win the respect of outsiders". Sometimes it's hard to believe that our quiet, little lives matter. After all, others are out there working and achieving great things while I am home folding laundry and baking bread. I wrote these verses out and have them stuck on the kitchen cabinet by the stove where I spend a lot of time. As I've been memorizing the words I am asking God to soak them into both my heart and my mind.
For me, the idea of ambition and a quiet life seem at odds. I think of ambition as striving for great things and even recognition. How strange then, to strive for a quiet life.
And that minding my own business part, ouch. Am I the only one struggling with that? I want to know what others are up to. But does it really matter? Won't knowing just led to more comparing myself to others instead of Christ?
I do like to work with my hands. I like to create beautiful things, all the better when they are beautiful things to eat. But, don't forget that last part, "so that your life may win the respect of outsiders". God can use my quiet life to win over non-believers. How amazing is that? By living a simple life, I have the time and energy to reach out to people. People aren't just an interruption to a jam-packed schedule. They are there for me to love, encourage, and listen to. Hmm...guess it's time to have a little at-home brunch and invite a few of the ladies in the neighborhood on over. I think there are two ladies on my block who are newly at home during the days.
Anyway, go get this book and read it! It's a quick book to read through. I'm rereading and taking notes in my copy now, gleaning more with each passing through. Plus, you can go visit Joanne's blog over at The Simple Wife. Have a great week!