“One thing I ask from the Lord, this only do I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze on the beauty of the Lord and to seek him in His temple.” (Psalm 27:4)
“But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” (Matthew 6:33)
Recently I spent time studying, meditating, and attempting to practice simplicity. It wasn’t easy (or simple!) During this time, I remember telling others that I felt like my life was not well-ordered. Life was seemingly too full, and I was struggling to make everything “fit” the way I thought it should. As I was seeking to bring better “order” to my life, the idea of a well-oriented life came up in my reading. This led me to ponder the relationship between the two. What is a well-oriented life? And what is a well-ordered life?
I came to the conclusion that a well-oriented life is a life pointed in the right/correct direction, and a well-ordered life is a life that has each “thing” in it’s correct place. As I reflected on what the Bible says about simplicity as singleness of heart, I realized that there is no way to have a well-ordered life without first ensuring that my life is well-oriented. My life is well-oriented when I seek first Jesus and His kingdom. I focus on the essential, and life becomes simpler when one thing matters most. When I seek first the Kingdom, I experience inner simplicity, which makes me able to seek exterior simplicity. These two together create larger spaces in my life for loving God and others. And really, what’s simpler that Jesus’ boiling down of the commandments: Love God and love others as you love yourself.
Prayer of Response:
“Lord God, loving and good Father, give me the courage, the wisdom and the strength to always have your Kingdom as the first priority in my life, to live with singleness of heart that frees me to better love you and others.” Holy God, As we read this, we are distracted.
Grant us focus.
We are worried.
Grant us peace.
Our lives are cluttered.
Grant us space.
Our minds are racing.
Slow us down.
Our hands are clinging to so many things.
Loosen our grasp.
May we release the many things of this world
as we seek the one thing-
Your eternal kingdom. Amen.
—Submitted by Theresa Anderson