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Saturday, June 5, 2010

Clutter-free lives

"Heaven's my throne, earth is my footstool.  What sort of house could you build for me?  What holiday spot reserve for me?  I made all this! I own all this!"   "But there is something I'm looking for: a person simple and plain, reverently responsive to what I say."  (Is. 66:1-2)

It is an encouragement to me to know that God is not looking for the eloquent or fancy to use for his purposes.  He is looking for the simple and plain to utilize as his instruments of grace and mercy to a hurting world.  I spent some time a while back just looking at the various definitions of "simple" and "plain" found in Webster's dictionary.  It is always a wonder to me to discover the "less than common" meanings of words. 

Simple:
  1. Free from guile, innocent
  2. Free from vanity, modest
  3. Free from display, humble
  4. Free from secondary complications
Plain:
  1. Even, level
  2. Free of extraneous matter, pure
  3. Free of impediments to view, unobstructed
  4. Not complicated
  5. Moderate and free of anything extravagant
Wow!  All that in two simple words.  Break each down a little, and you will see a picture of the one whose life God can continually pour more of his power and grace into.  Our passage today indicates that God is looking for the one who is willing to live above the guile of this world (the insidious cunning in attaining a goal; crafty or artful deception; duplicity of character that is exhibited in so many who live without God in their lives).  Those that do not need to be the center of attention attract the attention of God!  Isn't it amazing how God works?  Step out of the limelight and God shines his glory through you! 

What does it mean to be free of secondary complications in our lives - to be free of that which obstructs our view?  It means that we don't complicate our lives with things that just keep us busy, but don't really produce anything of lasting value.  We have a tendency to complicate our lives with all kinds of things.  Could be relationships that don't bring any real value (like hanging around with those that bring us into places of compromise in our choices).  Could be activities that take our time, but don't really require our participation because God has someone else uniquely designed to fill that spot.  Whatever it is that "clutters" our life - it acts as a obstruction or a complication in our spiritual walk.  It keeps us from a clear view of God's plan and is purposes for our lives.

Try listening to 10 people talk all at one time, making requests of you to perform 10 different tasks simultaneously.  It is impossible to catch the absolute intention of each of the 10 petitioners or the specific task they need accomplished!  No wonder God says he is looking for a person simple and plain - one who will be reverently responsive to what he says!  When our lives are free of clutter, it is easier to hear what is being said!  Our hearts are more prone to respond when their is clarity in what we are hearing.  Today, let's see what we can "unclutter" from our lives and see how truly wonderful it is to live with simplicity!  We might just hear that still small voice of our God in the hidden recesses of all that clutter!