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The simple life … now what?

by davesandel on May 30th, 2021

Sunday, May 30, 2021                        (today’s lectionary)

Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity

The simple life … now what?

Go and baptize all nations, in the name of the Father and Son and Holy Spirit. Teach them to observe what I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always.

Thus Jesus invites us to live the simple life, a life in his hands, following his instructions, receiving his mercy and grace, living into forever. Yesterday our daughter Andi posted “A simple post for a simple faith.” Just as she says, just as He says, just as I am.

We are children of God and if children, then heirs, joint heirs with Christ if only we suffer with him so that we may also be glorified with him.

Suffer with Jesus … be glorified … if only we say yes to the simple life. Love God and love your neighbor as yourself. I am prevented from doing this by losing track of how to let God love me and loving myself on my own in my own way with my own ideas and then completely forgetting to learn from God.

I try to use simple single syllables. But saying a few words doesn’t cut much mustard. I need to step up to the plate and DO STUFF. Take a deep breath and take some chances every day being hospitable and generous, vulnerable and authentic. (Can I get some help finding single syllable words for these sweet ways to live?) Breathe deep again, and do it again tomorrow.

All God’s works are trustworthy, he loves justice and right, and of the kindness of the Lord the earth is full. Blessed be the people.

For a few months Margaret and I have spent two or three or four days a week with our grandkids Miles and Jasper while Andi went to work. That blessed us and the kiddos and Andi and Aki. We lived out all those four things (see above).

Ask from one end of the sky to the other: Did anything so great ever happen before? Was it ever heard of?

Now we have a summer break, along with the kids and Andi. And that’s good and exciting, liberating even, just because we get to do something different for awhile. On the other hand, what we were doing felt pretty good, living pretty much a simple life serving God and each other. What now? Who now? Where and how, every day, will God show us how to vulnerable, authentic, hospitable and generous? That is what we just don’t know. Yet.

The great thing about time, though, is that it passes. And once it’s passed, then we’ll know, at least about what’s passed. And I don’t think it’s any of our business to know about what has yet to pass. Whatever plans we made for Miles and Jasper often got blown away when we came into their presence. What we call “plans” are written in the dust, and then God sends the rain, and our plans slide away into the wet earth, into puddles, and we try again.

Did a people ever hear the voice of God speaking from the midst of fire, as you did, and live?

Still, I guess we’re going to plan anyway. Planning is part of the fun. It gives us direction, and most everybody does it. What does God say? Well, he seems to be happy for us to make our plans, as long as we don’t stop his rain with our fancy umbrellas or roofs or … and maybe this is what ticks him off the most, with insurance.

OK, I think I’m joking. We all have umbrellas and roofs and especially, insurance. How can that push God away? It’s normal.

I don’t know. Living the simple life is complicated. I’m glad to have the rest of my life to learn more about it, waiting for eternity, listening every day.

This is why you must now know, and FIX IN YOUR HEART, that the Lord is God in the heavens above and on earth below, and that there is no other.

(Deuteronomy 4, Psalm 33, Romans 8, Revelation 1, Matthew 28)

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