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Simplicity at its best

by Will Phillips

Contributed by Columnist Fannie Moore

This week I have been thinking about the simple things and how they can bring joy to one’s life. Probably what caused me to think about it was a sermon our pastor shared last Sunday.

He is preaching a series on the 23rd Psalm, using only one verse per sermon. I have heard many sermons on that chapter, but never have I heard them using only one verse. With concentrating on the one verse and what it is telling us, we can really get the meaning more clearly.

Before he began the series, he gave us a concise summary of the chapter. (He gave credit to the originator of the saying, however I can’t remember who it was. I don’t think he would mind me sharing.)

“The Lord is my shepherd. I am his sheep. He is all that I need.”

Last week was week two, using Psalm 23:2. “He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters.”

As the pastor proceeded through his sermon, he emphasized how God is in control and we need to yield to him. If we do so, our needs will be met. 

As I pondered on this for several days, I realized the simplicity of the verse was what made it so profound.

If we could only remember this each day as we go about our activities, making plans and trying to carry them out, perhaps our lives would be more peaceful and less hectic.

With the situations we have been experiencing for the past few months, it has been more difficult to plan and carry out our plans. However, if we could only realize our daily activities don’t have to be earth-shattering, we might have more peaceful days. (We could find the green pastures and enjoy the still waters.)

I’ve been thinking of simple things we could do that would bring joy (not excitement) and contentment each day. I would like to share a few and I know you can come up with many of your own. These are just to get us thinking about making our lives more simple.

One is to plan simple meals. You don’t need a gourmet meal every day, even though that would be nice. But think about a one dish meal with a salad or dessert added. Yesterday, we had smothered liver and onions, a favorite but rare meal.  We added some quick-cooking rice and a pear pie made from pears shared by a friend. Now that wasn’t a remarkable meal, however it was one we enjoyed and it didn’t take a lot of extra time, effort and ingredients.

For a change of pace, pack a simple picnic lunch and enjoy the outdoors at a city park, by a nearby lake or any outdoor spot that looks appealing. Relax and enjoy the beautiful outdoors.

One might want to call a friend and go for coffee. Not only are you taking a break from your usual activities, but you’re enjoying your coffee and the camaraderie of a good friend.

To make a bit more of a change, take a one-day outing. It doesn’t have to be far, but one could take pictures along the way; visit a flea market or antique store and enjoy a light lunch in a new place.

And, at the end of the day, one night choose to watch a movie. To make it more special, add some popcorn and lean back in the recliner for an evening of fun. It doesn’t cost much nor take much effort. It is just one more simple way to create a little change in your routine and give you a much needed break.

Now, I know none of these are profound, but when one considers how a change of pace might change an attitude, it would be something to consider as being worthwhile.

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