Tuesday, July 20, 2010


So apparently I have a tendency to go weeks, nay, months without updating this blog. I'm sorry. That must be terribly frustrating to those of you that like to have a semi-regular glimpse into our lives. What is even more frustrating is that sometimes I go through seasons when I like to update daily, and other seasons, there is only silence...

I am realizing that is how my brain works, too. There are times when everything is cheery and the details of my days are tangible. It takes no effort to record daily happenings and funny little quips. But then inevitably, I dip into waters that are deeper, more complex, and my mind goes black for some time as I seek to process what I am thinking, what I hear God saying to me, and where I am being led. And then somehow I get out of the habit of communicating daily events and don't know how to enter back in.

So let's just start, awkwardly. Shall we?

For some time now I have felt gentle nudges to simplify, simplify, simplify. I don't think it's an uncommon message. We live in this culture that is so absolutely oppressive. Stuff EVERYWHERE. Things to do. Places to be. MONEY TO SPEND. It's so burdensome, isn't it? We watch TV shows about hoarders, feel guilt, and purge, frantically. We spend hard-earned dollars on storage solutions, organizational books, and systems. We neglect our kids to read websites and blogs about ways other people are doing "it" (whatever "it" is: organizing, parenting, creating, living), and bite our nails with anxiety that we don't know where to start. It appears that everyone else has it all together and we are the only ones that are lost.

Is anyone else feeling this? Is it only me? Maybe I should have said "I" instead of "we"...

Okay, then. Here is my confession. I did those things, I did. I spent hours trying to figure out better systems to do my daily tasks. I pushed my own children aside while sitting in front of the computer trying to figure out how to be a better parent. And then it struck me how absolutely silly it all was!

Simplify. Simplify. Simplify. But how, Lord? What does that mean? How do I know what it looks like? Where do I begin?

For one, we have determined after nearly 10 years of marriage that, for us, it doesn't mean birth control. The concept that a "smaller family equals a better life" has become a lie to me, because I know my own greediness and how quickly it would take over. Money for vacations? Done. Money for sports lessons? We're there. Money for nicer cars and lots more stuff? Yes, yes, and yes...

But an ever-growing family that ties me to home feels calmer and more secure. I know it doesn't make sense. Here is the best example I can give:

When Cole was a toddler, he was manic. He had problems processing sugars (that we hadn't discovered yet) and in addition to his food issues, he was a typical active little boy. He ran non-stop, always in a straight line, always away from me. Never looked back. I was exhausted for years, parenting just that child, but what I found as he grew is that he exhausted himself, too. He didn't always like being manic and active. Before he could even speak, he developed his own little sign for "go car" and when it all got to be too much for him, he would ask me to take him for a drive. I was always so amazed at how much calmer he would become the instant he was strapped into his 5-point harness. This look of pure relief would come over his face as if he knew it was going to be better now, for a time, because he didn't have to run and be crazy and control his body. He could just rest within the restriction. Now, looking back, I realize that I feel the same way. This world has too many things that lure me in and distract me. The (few) times that I have had plenty, I find myself immediately swayed by options. I'm too weak against them, and it's too easy to whip out my check card. There are too many bright lights and colors. It feels manic. I find my heart whispering, "five-point harness, Lord"...

The main thing that I feel God telling me these days is to adopt a posture of humility; now I am in the throes of trying to figure out what that looks like. I know it will be a process. But I can tell you that living a life with just enough manna for today feels peaceful and safe. Listening to my children and petitioning God for answers when I am up against a wall is calmer than doping out in front of the computer, looking for solutions in an endless sea of information. I don't think I want to give up this blog, and actually there are several things currently that I'd like to share with you...but I have to warn you that I might disappear from time to time when all this technology gets too much for me.

I guess those are all the things I have floating around in my head tonight. If anyone is still out there, come on back soon and we'll head for lighter topics for a while...


  1. I'm so glad you're back. I love hearing what you have to say about things!

  2. Beautiful...and I understand every word of it! Love your new experiment...I am in the process of trying to figure out how to go to a semi-cash system myself, we will see how it goes.