Suggestions for Further Reading of Celebration of Discipline
I think that purity of our heart, meditation on God’s Word, prayer and being honest to ourselves are the most important elements of the inward reality of simplicity. Our chastened heart is conscious about lust and impurity which keeps us from doing evil. At the same time, focusing on God’s word and prayer liberates us from our own thoughts of malevolence. For this practice, we should be honest to ourselves. This linear process develops our inward reality.
Conversely, the most important elements of an outward life-style of simplicity are integrity and honesty. We should refrain from the lust of possessing status and showing off our worldly positions and influence to other people. Giving to needy people is another important outward life-style. Providing our goods to others also becomes a proof of our outward life-style.
Firstly, I have received my life as a gift from God. I do not know what my life would have been if I had not known God personally. However, I sometimes hold onto my achievements and think that I deserve them because I have worked hard for them. I become proud of my efforts that I put into work in order to earn them. But in reality, I receive them only because of abundance grace of God.
I do trust in God for my life and protection. I do not worry about my life because my apprehension does not change the circumstance, situation, and plan of God. Instead, I feel I should plead to God for his intervention in the situation and circumstance. The Bible also says that any of us cannot add a single hour to our life by worrying. Still, my carnal nature tries to return to its previous state of attempting to control the unknown and eliminate uncertainties. Anxiety tries to shake the pattern of my sole dependence on God as if I could solve every problem and know every best way that I need.
I can say that I am willing to provide my goods to other people who are in need. But it also depends on those who are using my resources. I believe in good stewardship from God. One should take care of others’ goods if they give him or her for temporary use. In the case of giving forever, I do not cling to those goods which I give to people. As proverb also says that whatever we sow, so we reap.
Reflection Points for Journal Entries
The discipline of simplicity has revealed my misconception regarding simplicity. I have not paid much attention to the bondage of legalism which is also a disastrous spiritual blindness in a Christian’s life. The discipline of simplicity opened up new areas of freedom in my life. It helped me to know the wider and broader knowledge of inward and outward simplicity. Because of the understanding of simplicity, I became conscious about the area of my life where I need freedom. God helped me to triumph over my covetousness to get new gadgets. Foster calls ambition as a covetousness. To desire anything much more than needed is covetousness indeed. Thus, I pray to God to help me to not be ambitious for the things which I do not need. And I may more rely on God for the things I need; I may believe that God will provide.
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