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Simplified Living

On a Saturday afternoon a few years ago, our family found three live baby turtles. We found the first one in our backyard and the other two in the road about a block away from our house. Each of them was only about as big as a silver dollar. None of us had ever seen such little turtle hatchlings before so we took great delight in gently picking them up to check out their pretty red orange bellies and to feel how surprisingly strong their little legs were as they crawled their way out of our hands and back into the grass. For a few moments, I carried the two little turtles we found in the road with us while we walked, and I noticed that they both squeezed their eyes shut tight during their ride. Only later did it occur to me how stressful that may have been for them. These little creatures were designed to live snugly against the ground and move at a turtle’s pace, but I had swooped them up to my height and moved them along at my brisk pace. I imagine it must have felt for them something like the height and speed of sky-diving might feel for me!

It occurs to me that we may feel a little like those turtles. Sometimes we get caught up into a life of much higher stress and a much faster pace than we were designed to live. Maybe you feel like you’ve been hanging on for dear life and squeezing your eyes shut tight as life careens by. It feels as if someone hits the “fast-forward” button and suddenly we’re rushing through all the meetings and appointments and obligations of everyday life. In the midst of everything that comes your way this month, I urge you to learn from Mary in Luke 10:38-42 who was wiser than her sister Martha in his regard: clear as much time as you need for honest, unhurried conversation with Jesus. Identify the activities that replenish your soul and help you to function with a sense of fulfillment and satisfaction. Prayerfully consider which non-essential clutter you might omit from your life so that you can do more of the things you are made to do. Let go of the lesser things so you can live the full, abundant life God created you to live.

In God’s great grace,

Pastor Wendy

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