Living here in suburbia, I feel this constant inner battle between my desire to simplify our lives and the influence of the world around me. I have been trying to figure out what it looks like to live "the simple life". Many of my friends here would say that I already live a simple life by the sheer fact that I don't own an iphone or a designer handbag, but I think there is more to it than that.
Oh where to start???? I guess I can pick an extreme.
One of my absolute favorite families that we traveled with to China was a Mennonite family from Kansas. I can't put into words how drawn I was to this family. I loved their authenticity and found them to be hands down some of the nicest people on the trip. I have not kept up with them since we left (they don't do web pages and pictures) but I received a handwritten letter from them this week. It was wonderful and I was touched as she asked me about things like the changing of the trees. She also mentioned the pig they found on the side of the road and had decided to raise. Can I just say that I have no idea if the trees are changing and cannot imagine opening my home to a pig?!? And you know what, that saddens me. My life is so busy that it no longer comes natural to notice God's creation around me, much less appreciate it. While reading her letter, I longed to load up my family and drive to Kansas to start over.
Here is the deal though. God hasn't called us to Kansas. He has called us to Houston. I struggle daily with how to live a simpler life in a city that is anything but simple.
My problem too is that I can't figure out what defines simple. Is it the size of your house? The view from your back porch? Whether or not you homeschool your kids? How many activities your children are involved in? The price of your clothes? Whether you cook all your meals (let's hope not because I would need to give up)?
All I know is that my heart longs for something simpler but I don't know what that is. I would love your thoughts.