The simple life has its roots in obedience.
Our lives-- at least, my life -- gets chaotic when we pile up clutter. Too many things to do, think about, and fix. Too many irons in the fire, not enough focus. And a lack of obedience to God.
I've posted about obeying immediately, completely, and without complaint before, and I want to take it a step farther because I'm learning that obedience simplifies life.
I tend to try to think things through before I act on what God seems to be telling me to do. I try to think it through, to figure it out, even talk God out of asking me to do something so out of my comfort zone. Some of the time I do obey, and some of the time I miss the opportunity.
This summer I heard a sermon on Luke 17:1-19. This section is divided into four, and I usually read it as such. But this pastor connected the dots, contrasting the disciples with some lepers. See, Jesus tells the disciples to rebuke the brother that sins, forgive the brother that repents, and continue forgiving even if they keep sinning. Their response? "Increase our faith!" or, "I don't know if I can do that!". But when Jesus tells the 10 lepers to go show themselves to the priests, they go. And they still had leprosy when they went. But Jesus told them to do something, so they obeyed, even though it didn't look like it'd work. Yet as they went-- as they obeyed-- they were healed.
Our response to a command from God ought not be to theorize, to justify, to consider how to apply, to marvel at the impossibility of it, but to obey. Anything short of, "Yes, Lord," followed by obedience is disobedience.
And to determine for yourself that you have no alternative to obeying God's commands makes your life incredibly simpler because you know exactly what you're going to do. You don't have to come to each command and determine how exactly and to what extent you're going to obey, you just obey.
Now obeying God sometimes doesn't look like it'll work, or like it's worth it. I'm sure it's going to be difficult in the coming days and years, and many things won't make sense, but I'm determining to obey-- with God's help.
And you know what else? Not only does obedience simplify, it frees. I've heard it before, and experienced it, but I'm looking forward to living it.