Last Sunday night we talked about the Simple Life (no, not the stupid reality show. I'd like to say that I've never actually seen an episode, at least a whole episode, of the show). We talked about the life that has one single focus, one pure and holy passion (to quote the song). This becomes evident in external ways, but we have to be careful not to focus on the externals of simplicity before we have addressed and moved towards inner simplicity. I think that is a problem with much of the stuff I have read about simplicity recently - it jumps right to ways to strip your life of luxuries and frivolities without addressing the inner source of this lifestyle.
What I didn't have time to emphasize enough is the "Why". We spent most of our time talking about the "What" and the "How", so I thought I would used the website to push into that a little bit more. Why strive for a life of simplicity?
I can see two very compelling reasons to pursue a life of simplicity: First, it allows the world to see with clarity what our treasure it. Have you ever seen those old Where's Waldo pages. It was a page full of optical busyness. Within the scene there was a man named Waldo, wearing his trademarked red and white stripped shirt and glasses (if you've never seen it, check it out to see how hard it can be). It is very hard to find Waldo in these pictures because there is so many things that distract the eye.
Unfortunately, I think that is the problem the world has when the look at us who call ourselves followers of Christ. We claim that Jesus is the treasure of our hearts, but frankly, he's hard to see because our lives are so cluttered and busy. Pursuing a life of inner and outer simplicity strips those distractions away and puts Christ as our Treasure on full display. That is what our witness needs - lives that back up what we claim. That is the first reason I see to pursue simplicity.
The second reasons is...(check back tomorrow)