Home > Uncategorized > simplicity

simplicity

My brothers, my sisters, God has called me to walk in the way of humility, and showed me the way of simplicity. . . . The Lord has shown me that he wants me to be a new kind of fool in the world, and God does not want to lead us by any other knowledge than that.  —Francis of Assisi

Franciscan prophecy is at its core “soft prophecy”—which is often the hardest of all! Rather than criticize and shame the evils of his time, St. Francis simply lived differently and let his lifestyle be his sermon. This way of life is counter to the ways of the world, a kind of “holy foolishness” that doesn’t make logical sense to our consumer, quid-pro-quo economy

When you agree to live simply, you put yourself outside of others’ ability to buy you off, reward you falsely, or control you by money, status, salary, punishment, and loss or gain. This is the most radical level of freedom, but, of course, it is not easy to come by. Francis and Clare had little to lose, no desire for gain, no loans or debts to pay off, and no luxuries that they needed or wanted. Most of us can only envy them.

 When you agree to live simply, you do not consider the immigrant, the refugee, the homeless person, or the foreigner as a threat to you or as competition with you. You have chosen their marginal state for yourself—freely and consciously becoming “visitors and pilgrims” in this world, as Francis puts it (quoting 1 Peter 2:11). A simple lifestyle is quite simply an act of solidarity with the way most people have lived since the beginnings of humanity. It is thus restorative justice instead of the very limited notion of retributive justice.

 When you voluntarily agree to live simply, you do not need to get into the frenzy of work for the sake of salary or the ability to buy non-essentials or raise your social standing. You enjoy the freedom of not climbing. You might climb for others, but not only for yourself. —Richard Rohr O.F.M.

SELF-GOVERNANCE FOR SIMPLICITY

 

Buy things for their usefulness rather than their status or prestige.

Learn the difference between a real need and an addiction. Then find support and accountability to regain “sobriety,” freedom from addiction.

Develop a habit of giving things away.

Avoid unnecessary and short-lived technological gadgets that promise to “save time.”

Enjoy things without owning them. For example, take advantage of public libraries and parks.

Nurture awe and appreciation for nature. Spend more time outdoors!

Get out—and stay out—of debt.

Use plain, honest speech. Say what you mean and keep your commitments.

Reject anything that oppresses others. For example, buy Fair Trade products

Seek God’s kingdom of love and justice foremost. If anything distracts you from that purpose, let it go.

—Richard J. Foster,“The Discipline of Simplicity,” The Celebration of Discipline (Harper & Row: 1978), 78-83

simplicity

Categories: Uncategorized
  1. Gary McGinnis
    October 11, 2016 at 7:57 am

    And the older you get the greater is the desire and realization of the beauty of simplicity.

  2. October 12, 2016 at 10:38 am

    This message is coming at me from all sides right now! I love the way this is worded though. It cuts right to the core of the whole thing. Thank you!

  1. No trackbacks yet.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: