Saturday, August 29, 2015

A Place Called Simplicity

I found this treasure in my late 20's. Twenty-seven to be exact. I'd been married 5 years. We had three children, already lived in two apartments, built two homes, and my husband's career was taking off. Life was moving quite fast.

It was all beautiful and pleasant things, mind you, but busyness surrounded me. I was still trying to grasp the idea of making my house a home. I was learning to cook meals well, be a joyful wife who had make-up on and a fresh shirt without spit up on the shoulder when her husband walked in the door at six, a momma who was attentive to her children, and all the while keeping up a home that kept getting bigger. I was tangled between public school when our son went off to kindergarten and the tug in my heart towards homeschooling. I had yet discovered what order looked like in my life. More internal order than external but one feeds the other. It was about this time that I started to break. I just couldn't do it all nor did I want to anymore. Play dates, Bible Study, Sports, Ahhh... it was all so much. 

God brought me a verse that I still to this day have on my fridge 20 years later:


I needed to hear this and embrace it. Now to figure out how to apply it to my life. 

Simplify became my motto. You will find it all over our home today. I knew God was about to do a big thing in me, I just didn't know how.

I read one of my journals the other day about a time I went to a women's retreat at Hume Lake. It was about this time that I was searching for the HOW to make changes in our home. It was also about this time that I desperately needed to find a way to do life differently. Claire Cloninger was the speaker that weekend and she published a book that became my catalyst. She spoke straight to my heart. God used her story to begin my story.  A Place Called Simplicity made its way into my hands and began the transform my life from chaos to one of peace and order.

I took ownership for my own faults, sought out Jesus to heal my brokenness and knew I could do more for my family with God's grace and direction. I started giving up activities ad began to pour more into my children's lives and my marriage. Wouldn't you know it, God also orchestrated a move just about that time. I was stripped of anything familiar and given a chance to put into practice what He was already speaking.

It's one thing to read about simplifying, it's a whole different thing living it out. I was be refined by the Refiner's fire for two years. Ok, it took me awhile to get it.  We had some sweet moments, just the five of us, and some hard times. I cried, I laughed, I mourned and sooo wanted to go back to our home town. But through these two years I also embraced what God was doing. I began homeschooling our children, I began looking at my home differently, and my dear husband and I stopped taking each other for granted. I was on the road to simplicity. Instead of running to church all the time for social outings, we played at home together. Instead of bbqs or game nights with friends, we started Friday Night Family Night. Instead of having the TV on, the children would pull out puzzles or games or enjoy playing make believe together. We read together. We.were.together. Just the five of us, creating memories.

It was quiet.

It was simple.

I knew I had found what I was meant to do and who I was meant to be. I love my family, even when I was still learning how to love them well, I always loved them, loved family life and having as many children around as possible. We welcomed our 4th child, a sweet baby girl, into our home at the end of this season and the beginning of a new one. Another change, another journey, another story. But as this chapter of our life closed and the new one began, one thing didn't change... to live simply.

I continue to journey for a life of order and simplicity where ever we live. It's not always been easy and I can recall one season I didn't do it well sadly, but my heart always goes back to the place where I heard God call me out to a new place. A place of serving, and loving, and honoring my husband, children and my home. It's then that I am at my best. It's then that I find my most joy, really.

Reality Check

What is your story? Do you know God's calling you to something deeper, something more? A life of chaos is never the way to live. What would it take to slow down long enough to bring order into your life or home? Maybe it's time to stop that train that you keep running after. Simplicity doesn't mean boredom. It means doing what your called to do and nothing more. Figuring that out is your journey.

Thanks for listening,
Tuna Jones


No comments: