Lord Help Me To Live Simply – A Prayer

Still grappling with these words from Daniel Taylor’s book In Search of Sacred Places:

Simplicity is no great virtue unless wedded to right priorities. A desirable simplicity entails the recognition of what is important in life, coupled with the strength of will to structure one’s daily existence around that recognition. It requires minimizing the impact of one’s life of unimportant things, an extremely difficult task in an acquisitive and schedule-filled culture. (148)

My reflections inspired this prayer:

Rhythm of Life.001

Am I Fully Recognized For What I Am?

My mother at 20 and at 90

My mother at 20 and at 90

It is just over two weeks since my mother died and I am back in Seattle feeling somewhat normal and re-anchored. This is a time of reevaluation for me. One friend wisely commented

No matter our age, I think the passing of our mothers awakens a new life stage for us.

I think she is right. Some things will never be the same again. And in the midst of the ache in my heart, I find myself rethinking my own life and its priorities. I continue to read the book In Search of Sacred Places, which I was reading aloud to my mother in her last few days. It has some great insights for me at this stage. In talking about the Celtic saints who died at the hands of the viking raiders Daniel Taylor comments:

If they were to die, they hoped to do so fully recognized for what they were. (p129)

He goes on to ask the challenging question:

how willing am I to organize my own life and actions and relationships around those spiritual truths that I claim should define every life? How eager am I to be fully recognized? (p130)

For the Celtic saints, all of life was organized in light of spiritual realities. Daily life was an ordered rhythm of worship, work, and study – all as an offering to God.

I am not sure that I can say the same for my own life. We follow a God who was not afraid to suffer and die to draw us close. We adhere to a faith that found its home among the poor and the outcast. It was spread initially by persecution.  and rejection, yet we want none of that.

Early Christians were not afraid to be fully recognized, even if it meant their death. Yet for us faith is often a benign and comfortable value, “useful for food drives and homeless shelters, but ugly and even dangerous when it publicly asserts its claims as truth. ” (p129)

I want, in this season of my life to be fully recognized for my faith, not just for I what I say but for how I live out every aspect of my life. I want my purposes to become more aligned with God’s purposes. I want the rhythm of my life to more closely follow a Godly rhythm and I want my actions to more fully proclaim the values and culture of God’s eternal world.

Will you join me on this pilgrim path so that together we may all be fully recognized as the caring, compassionate, generous, life giving people that God intends us to be?