The Discipline of Simplicity

I have more books than you, in fact, all the walls of my office are lined with books.

There was a conversation recently where we were discussing reading print versus electronically. I own a lot of books. They mostly are not in my office any longer. That is because we moved them all downstairs a couple of years ago in order to paint and recarpet my home office. So now, two of the four walls of our downstairs guest bedroom are filled with bookcases.

But one guy bragged about how many books he had. He didn’t mean anything by the comment, but it made me think.

If simplicity is a Spiritual Discipline, then how many books do we need? Is it like a library where we may need to reference them? Or is it clutter? Something to point to with pride? Filling up our rooms.

I’m not going to answer that directly. Simplicity is a state of mind. Are we tied to things, or do we use things?

Maybe like my choice in cars. After many years of trying to go cheap on cars and worrying about constant repairs, I spent a little more money (not Mercedes or Lexus money, though) and bought a car with reasonable styling but great reliability. Given where I live and what I do, I need a car. If I am going to own one, I want one that does not complicate my life.

Clothes are another item that can bring clutter or suck up too much space. How many do you really need?

How many things do you have that get in the way of simply living–or living simply? What can we divest ourselves of? Uncomplicating our lives is a useful goal for enhancing our deepening life in the Spirit.

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