Saturday, February 21, 2009

The Simple Life

Life's been pretty hectic these days. Our basement is a mess due to a renovation that is taking longer than expected. Not to mention the backlash of mess streaming into the rest of the house, not being able to utilize the space downstairs. I am very anxious to start spring cleaning and rid our home of clutter and items we no longer use. My husband has also taken on some overtime shifts (this past week he did 6 nights in a row! needless to say I am exhausted from night parenting a newborn and a toddler who has taken a new interest to waking up several times in the night, by myself). We also are battling colds. Then I was given an opportunity to start a home business.

I must say I was intrigued. I studied the business, and spent time dreaming big and balancing that with reality. I guess at first I am always intrigued at the prospects of generating income. The offer really made me search and recommit how I want to live my life. I really do want a simple life. I want to spend most of my time with my family. I want to grow and cook healthy foods for them. I don't want to worry about investments and properties. I don't want to be thinking about work while I am playing with my girls. I want my home to be simple too. Not filled with clutter and stuff. I want to enjoy people and places rather than things. I want to love and be loved.

As much as I want a simple life, I also want financial freedom. But then I read a quote such as this: (thanks for adding this quote to your blog Claire - It really spoke to me).

“Jesus is ready to set us free from the heavy yoke of an oppressive way of life. Plenty of wealthy Christians are suffocating from the weight of the American dream, heavily burdened by the lifeless toil and consumption we embrace. This is the yoke from which we are being set free. And as we are liberated from the yoke of global capitalism…our sisters and brothers in Guatemala, Liberia, Iraq and Sri Lanka will also be liberated. Our family overseas, who are making our clothes, growing our food, pumping our oil, and assembling our electronics - they too need to be liberated from the empire’s yoke of slavery. Their liberation is tangled up with our own. The new yoke isn’t easy. (It’s a cross, for heaven’s sake.) But we carry it together, and it is good and leads us to rest, especially for the weariest traveler.” Jesus for President, Shane Claiborne

It really makes me consider the 'American Dream'. How it actually is a yoke of slavery. Slavery to fear the future, slavery to keep up with the Jones', slavery to purchase purchase purchase, slavery to perfection..of body, self, and surroundings! I want to be liberated! I want simplicity. I want to rest in Jesus. I want others to have freedom. My heart wants this. Longs for this. My 'other self' wants stuff! Wants financial freedom, an early retirement, nice clothes, and a hybrid SUV ;). This is my tension. This is my yoke. This is my struggle.

Perhaps the first place to start is to identify the life I want. Then filter decisions. What do I do with this tension? Will it ever subside?

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