Simplicity: Deepening Your Relationships

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This week, Hartlee Kirk sums up her series on simplicity by showing us how this extends to those around us. I love how she gives us the freedom to “wear” our simplicity according to our personality. What a blessing a few simple steps can extend to so many! Thanks, Hartlee.

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Simplicity can bless anybody, but looks different for everyone depending on their lifestyle, personality, and goals. What has God called you to in this season of life? As a mom and wife, caring for my family and our home are all-consuming. Having less clutter has unburdened me so that I am physically and mentally able to be more present and feel less overwhelmed. The overflow of personally simplifying extends to family, friends, and even strangers.

Family:

“Yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes.” James 4:14

As a mom, I easily say yes when my son asks me to play trains with him because I can knock out household chores during his nap. Quality time produces more peace, trust, and joy in the home, strengthening the family unit. Parent’s (typically) have eighteen years of living with their child. There are days when getting to bedtime feels like running a marathon, but in the blink of an eye they will be running out the door for their first date. We have a huge responsibility of raising independent, loving, thriving adults.

As a wife, I am a more friendly companion and cheerful to serve when I’m not drowning in a sea of dishes. Watching The Office with my husband at the end of the day is more enjoyable without a running list of unfinished to-do’s in my head. I am more present, more energetic, and more grounded. My family is thankful, trust me.

Friends and Strangers:

“So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith.” Galatians 6:10

When a friend is driving through town, I can invite them to swing by without frantically picking up toys and laundry from the floor because our possessions are manageable. Hospitality can be defined by “the quality or disposition of receiving and treating guests and strangers in a warm, friendly, generous way.” In His ministry, Jesus depended on the hospitality of other, having no permanent residence Himself. Hebrews 13:2 reminds us to “entertain strangers, for by so doing some people have entertained angels without knowing it.” Imagine the mutual blessings that could come from a readiness to open our homes warmly, friendly, and generously!

Hosting angels sounds unlikely yet thrilling, but this movement toward less could start to feel legalistic and boring without the gospel. Jesus didn’t call us to be minimalist; He calls us to love and serve others. He doesn’t ask us to throw away our belongings; He commands us to spend wisely and be generous. Whether it’s clutter or a capsule wardrobe, things of this world will try to control us. Ask the Lord for wisdom, be controlled by the Spirit, and say “yes!” to more time, deeper relationships, more intention, and more joy!

“Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men.” Colossians 3:23