Simplicity Isn’t Simple, Is It?

I miss school.
Wait, did I really just say that???
Yep, I really do. Now, don’t get me wrong, I don’t miss some things but I do miss the simplicity of it all. I’ll tell youth that they need to enjoy their time in school and all I get is a very confused look 😉

Simplicity. What do I mean by that? I mean that in school everything was/is planned out for you. You knew exactly what you were going to do each day. You knew you’d spend your weekends at sporting events. You knew who your friends were. Life was simple. Of course in the moment it seems everything but, but, being out of school just for 5 months I see how easy I had it.

As humans we were created for community. In Genesis, where God created man He specifically says that it’s not good for man to be alone. The author in Hebrews calls us to meet together so that we may encourage each other. And then one of my favorites, Proverbs 27:17 which says, “Iron sharpens iron, and one man sharpens another.” It is all throughout Scriptures that we are not just created but commanded to ban together so that we may hold each other accountable, bearing burdans and grow together in Christ. Even Jesus had his small group to walk with.
So where do we go wrong?

I’ve been thinking about this and I believe that we, as a society, have become lazy. Now I know this isn’t news but I want to focus on something. We are so used to things in life being spoon-fed to us that even making friends seems too hard. I’m guilty of this as much as the next. I don’t want to try. I want people to come to me. Beep, beep, beep, wake up call! It doesn’t work like that!!!  We become content with going to work and coming home with nothing in between. No heart-to-heart conversations. I found myself rather convicted the other night because I got so frustrated and kind of jealous over a friendship. That’s the silliest thing I’ve ever done. If I’m jealous because someone has a better friendship than I do with a certain person, I can definitely do something about it. Be intentional. It’s really not that hard.

Simplicity can be simple if we stop being selfish and reach out

For me, big groups can be intimidating. I get lost in them easily because I don’t have a strong personality. The result? I feel like people don’t like me or aren’t interested. That’s not the case. If I know big groups aren’t my thing but I want to connect, pick someone and go to lunch or coffee. Do this a number of times and before long, those big groups don’t seem so big. Again, be intentional.

Life Happens…Write It Out

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Those of you who know the TV show Greys Anatomy know about Meredith Grey & Christina Yang’s “Dance It Out”. Those of you who aren’t familiar with it allow me to explain. Whenever Meredith or Christina are stressed out, they dance it out. They shake, jump around and laugh until their problems are no longer big. Well Greys Anatomy, when I’m stressed, I don’t dance. I write.

I wouldn’t say that I am stressed but life has happened. I completed my Masters Degree. I graduated. I’ve looked for a job. I’ve been turned down from jobs. I turned 25. I’m still living at home. To be honest when I decided to return to blogging I had to really decide what I was going to share first. I still haven’t decided 🙂 But I did decide that I wanted to share a Scripture God has placed on my heart for this time in my life.

“But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.”

Philippians 3:13-14

You see, for me a lot has happened the past 6 months. I have had ample opportunities to be discouraged and disheartened. I have gotten bogged down a few times but when this verse was spoken that week in church, I felt God saying, “Stacie, this is what I want you to do.” Yes, I should learn from things but I can’t be stuck in the past. I can’t be too focused on future things either because no mater what, my goal and ultimate prize in life is to spend eternity with Him. I have learned the importance of not being focused on the future. The past year I have been so set on not putting down roots because I was sure I would be moving into a full time job right after graduation. I passed up community (dumb decision for another post) and many other things. What I missed was that God wanted me to take a breath and settle here. And just because I’m settling doesn’t mean I’ll be here forever. It just means that I am happy where He has me. Growing.

So Greys Anatomy, life happens. You can dance but I’m going to write.

ps. sorry for the shortness, I’m just excited to write again and wanted to get something out. more to come in the next week!

Blessings

Joyful

Throughout the Bible there is this command to be joyful even in the midst of hard times. In the Old Testament with the Israelites and then in the New Testament Paul instructs believers time and time again to rejoice and be glad. Now, it’s easy to say that we are joyful in the good circumstances but when our life take a turn for the worst so does our state of heart.

It is SO HARD to do this. It’s hard to be joyful when life throws me a curve ball. It’s so hard to be joyful when I want to focus on my current situation and try and figure a way out instead of focusing on God who’s already got it figured out. This is the difference between biblical happiness and joy. Happiness comes from our circumstances while joy comes from the Lord. “Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, 

This is joy. This is contentment. This is trust.

 I think I have said before that I don’t like to “grow where I’m planted”. I like to think ahead to the next step. To the next thing that is going to happen in my life. But when I do this, I miss out on the beautiful things that God has for me here in this moment. When I do this I’m saying that I’m not content with where God has me right now. That there is something wrong with the circumstances that my life is in. I’m always looking for a way to improve where I’m at not thinking that where I’m at can be great if I focus my attention and state of mind on God and not my circumstances. I am learning that as I am shifting my focus toward God and his glorious riches He has for me right now, I see my complaining slowly die and I start to rejoice even though I may be hurting. “The joy of the Lord is your strength” (Nehemiah 8:10). I love where I am and who God is making me into. I have joy in that. Yes, my circumstances will cause me hurt sometimes but as long as I keep my focus and faith in God, I will always have joy!

A prayer that I saw my favorite Lysa TerKeurst post on Facebook recently,”God I love you. I don’t love this situation. But I love you. Therefore, I have everything I need to keep putting one foot in front of the other and will walk through until I get to the other side of this. I trust in you. In Jesus’ name, amen.” This is a gut-honest prayer. I love it! I will have joy in Jesus Christ even though I may not love my current situation. This is true joy…not happiness.

I would rather be what God chose to make me than the most glorious creature that I could think of; for to have been thought about, born in God’s thought, and then made by God, is the dearest, grandest, is the most precious thing in all thinking.

George MacDonald