This sign was supposed to be simple. In fact, it was simple by design. But something…someone made a mistake and now what was meant to be quite simple and clear has become quite confusing and a huge roadblock to understanding what the store owner was trying to communicate. “If you’re life is complicated like mine…here’s your sign.” (Bill
I’m sitting at Carlino’s (Halsey in Gresham) drinking a coffee as slow as possible. It seems to be the only thing in my life that isn’t traveling 100-mph. The demands of “life” are squeezing every ounce of effort and energy I have out of me. Ever feel like that? Maybe it’s not busyness, but maybe it’s simply a physical obstacle you face each and every day. Maybe it’s not an overload of work, but just an enormous amount of responsibility. Or maybe you’re working two or three jobs just to make ends meet. Your cell phone won’t quit ringing. People are calling on you to solve their problems. Your wife needs your time. Your kids need your attention. Your church needs you to volunteer. LOST, the final season, is calling your name! Is there anything that doesn’t demand a piece of you?
You see, this is what makes life so complicated. Now, in the above paragraph (3rd sentence) I put the word LIFE in quotations. That’s because in order to make that statement, we must define “life”, agreed? OK. I say we must do that because our definition of “life” and God’s definition of life may be two different things. Our definition of life may include many things that are a distraction to you in your attempt to live life as a fully devoted follower of Christ.
Maybe you define life as work, family, church, raising the kids, spending time with your wife, paying taxes, tithing to the church, sex, food, and rock-n-roll. Those items are fair in describing life aren’t they? I think so. So how does “life” seem to exhaust you on an emotional, physical, and spiritual level? These are all things we are supposed to partake in (with the exception of rock-n-roll) within the boundaries of Scripture, so what’s the problem? Where have we gone wrong? This complicated “life” is really supposed to be simple (like the sign) and it really is designed to be simple, thus the title “Complicated Simplicity is Really Simple.”
So where have we gone wrong? Worship. That’s right, worship.
A friend of mine, Marcus Hathcock, at Easthill Church in Gresham was leading a Spirit-moving praise and worship set last night. I did not stand for worship due to total exhaustion, but I worshiped. Broken and tired, I worshiped. And God so gently spoke to me through his Spirit-led worship, “Jamie, son,…life is as simple as worship.” That’s all He said and my heart melted in humility as I buried my face in my hands. As a Christian, I just considered and assumed all I did was an act of worship. But, you see, that’s not good enough. We can’t aimlessly live life and hope that our reactions, thoughts, and actions are a form of worship. That’s like living life in a marriage and assuming that my coming and going and just living life will express my deep love and commitment to my wife. It doesn’t work that way and it shouldn’t.
The commitments you have; family, church, work, tithing, taxes, raising the kids, etc. overwhelm us because we don’t view them as very specific acts of worship. If we did, if we saw them as very specific acts of worship, we would give more focused and intense effort in doing those things succeedingly well. We would know our emotional, physical, and spiritual limits because we’d be more in-tune with God’s will and desire for our lives. We would be careful when deciding to take on new tasks. We would probably eliminate some areas that aren’t so good for us. And we’d find balance because our lives would simply be Spirit-led.
What’s different about your life from the lives lived by those in the world around you? If someone were to look at your family would they be able to identify it as a family who seeks after God and His holiness? Or would it look like something else?
The complexity in our lives are not complexities at all; they are simple. We’ve made God-given responsibility complicated because we don’t worship Him with every responsibility. I encourage you today to take a close, hard look at your “complicated” life and list those responsibilities you have. Focus on making each and every one an act of beautiful and personal worship to God. Ask Him to reveal those responsibilities that need to be let go and those that need to be improved. But in all, ask that He be pleased with your “worship” through each specific task and responsibility.
In everything, simply worship.
Therefore I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect. ~ Romans 12:1-2