Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Longing For Simplicity

Sometimes my life feels and looks a bit like the picture above. Yes, even my life as a nun. I have visions of the perfect nun—demure and sweet in her almost empty prayer cell, attached to nothing but God. Well, that’s not I! The desire for God, though, runs deep in my veins and recently my prayer has been leading me to look at the obstacles to my heart's deepest desire. One of my favorite gospel passages is the story of the rich young man of Matthew 19 who had such a burning desire to follow Christ but couldn't quite pull it off because of his possessions. My life has been haunted by a desire for simplicity and I believe it is an authentic haunt. A few days ago I was so moved by a meditation Mitch Finley wrote for the Living Faith Catholic Devotional. It was a reflection on Mt19:16-22 and Mitch was writing about how part of the path to spiritual freedom is "a radical disinterest in accumulating stuff." I got a lump in my throat as I read that phrase. I am glad for the lump as it got my attention. My mantra for the next few weeks will be exactly that: a radical disinterest in accumulating stuff. It is a practice I am ready for. Must be my age.


  1. Well thanks for this. I love the photo and your authentic haunt. A good reminder to us all. Let us know how you do with the radical disinterest mantra too.

  2. Your (and my)friend Lila sent me a link to this post. I, too, have a longing for simplicity. Right now I am divesting myself of a bunch of stuff (selling, throwing, giving away) for these reasons:

    1. Need the money.
    2. Don't want my daughter to ever have to deal with it.
    3. Longing for simplicity. I need that weight of those belongings off my shoulders. I need to not have to store them, dust them, regret having bought them in the first place.

    Thanks, Julie

  3. Macrina, Beth and Julie: Yes, count me in! As Sr. Mary Southard told me 10 years ago when I was cleaning out closets so I would have room to redefine my life, "Too much clutter---no room for the soul!" What a journey, I'm still working on it, cheers to all, Joni

  4. I came by way of Lila also. Your blog is very peaceful. I too long for simplicity.

  5. just saying there is a little blog award for you on my main blog. :)

  6. This important statement reminds me of the beginning of my spiritual path which was with the book Voluntary Simpllicity. Deepening contemplation naturally seemed to make the importance of stuff fall away. I think that is true in the larger picture also. Bringing Presence to anything allows the unnecessary to fall away.