Simplify Your Life– What’s the First Step?

Is your life complicated, busy, and way too cluttered? You can use planners, organize closets, and give things to Goodwill, but those things aren’t at the root of your problem. Jeff explains that Biblically, there’s a very important key to simplifying our lives, and without it, nothing else will bring us peace.



What’s the Problem We Face? (5:45)
  • We wish we had a 30-hour day, but even if we did, we would pack it just as full as we pack our 24-hour days
  • “We so often buy things we don’t need with money we don’t have, to impress people we don’t care about”
  • We are pulled in so many different directions and end up angry. This is the “Tyranny of the Urgent” – We have become slaves to the urgent, popular, surface level issues in our life
  • This results in lack of peace in the house
  • We try to solve the problem with planners, time management strategies, giving things away, spring cleaning, etc. Nothing works if we don’t get to the root of the problem!
  • (15:00) Henry David Thoreau- “There are a thousand hacking at the branches of evil to the one who is striking at the root”
  • (15:30) Quaker teacher Thomas Kelly said, “I would suggest that the true explanation of the complexity of our program is an inner one, not an outer one. The outer distractions of our interests reflect an inner lack of integration in our lives. We are trying to be several selves at once without all ourselves being organized by a single mastering life within us.”
  • Our inner selves are fragmented
  • The simplicity that we seek is not found in organization “hacks” and time management tricks–the simplicity that we seek is a relationship with Jesus Christ.
Why, Theologically, Do We Face This Problem? (20:25)
  • The Fall—“Do not eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil”
    • Up until this point, there is simplicity and harmony in their life. After the fall, there is a rupture in relationship
      • Genesis 3:8 And they heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day and the man and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God…”
    • (22:00) Genesis 3:6 – Why did Eve take the fruit?
      • “It was good for food”
      • “It was a delight to the eyes”
      • “The tree was to be desired to make one wise”
    • They made the creation an idol to replace the Creator
      • 2 Corinthians 11:3 “But I am afraid as the serpent deceived Eve by his cunning, your thoughts will be led astray from a sincere and pure devotion to Christ” (Revised Standard Version)
      • “But I am afraid, lest as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, your minds should be led astray from the simplicity and purity of devotion to Christ.” (New American Standard Bible)
    • Jesus has to be on the throne of our lives—he is the focus of our lives. There’s nothing wrong with things that taste good, look good, and make you wise, but they are secondary. If you fill your lives with these things first and foremost
    • Is the complexity of your life because you have filled your time with the things of this world, or is Jesus on the throne of your heart?
    • Jesus lived the most simple and the most productive life of any human that has ever lived
      • John 17:4 “Father, I completed the work you gave me to do.”
      • Jesus worked hard, but his life was never at a feverish pace. He had one focus—his heavenly father, and that simplicity of life allowed him to do every task his father assigned.
      • Let your primary vocation help you focus your life and respond to God’s will with your time and resources
      • CCC 2602 “Jesus often draws apart to pray in solitude, on a mountain, preferably at night. He includes all men in his prayer, for he has taken on humanity in his incarnation, and he offers them to the Father when he offers himself. Jesus, the Word who has become flesh, shares by his human prayer in all that “his brethren” experience; he sympathizes with their weaknesses in order to free them. It was for this that the Father sent him. His words and works are the visible manifestation of his prayer in secret.”

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1 Comment

  1. Listened to this podcast today on my way home from work. And at a time when I am striving to make changes in my life to simplify things. The thought that came to my mind today in my spiritual walk is simply to talk to Jesus. Just start there – no complicated theological reasonings. Just talk to him. Thanks Jeff.


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