Leaning against the gymnasium wall, Bob and I talked about our children and their involvement in sports. Between carting his kids to Cub Scouts, his work and everything else, his life sounded complex. Life in our land is like walking into Circuit City and seeing 15 different channels at the same time in the television section, while we talk on our cellular phones and wave at the sales clerk we know across the room. Isn’t it comforting that no matter how fast the globe spins, no matter what level of activity we engage in, Jesus remains the same!
I don’t need more activities to fill my life. I’m not looking to win some gold-plated plaque for juggling more balls on a motorized unicycle. I want to simplify. I want to give more attention, more effort to knowing God. My hunger grows to be with Him.
Acts 6:3,4—Therefore, brothers, select from among you seven men of good reputation, full of the Spirit and wisdom, whom we can appoint to this duty. But we will devote ourselves to prayer and to the preaching ministry.
Do we mistakenly think we look better if we are doing more? Are we missing the truth that what God wants most is not our activity? Listen to what He said to His faithful servant Moses about the Israelites, “If only they had such a heart to fear Me and keep all My commands, so that they and their children will prosper forever” (Deuteronomy 5:29). To the ever-sensitive prophet Jeremiah, He shared, “I will give them one heart and one way so that for their good and for the good of their descendants after them, they will fear Me always” (Jeremiah 32:39). What God wanted from the children of Israel, He wants from us—our hearts!
When we are able to relinquish the need to be busy, entertained or productive, we find that our Lord is near. Singleness of heart does not come about by crowding my life with MORE. If I cannot focus on Christ and walk after Him I am headed for despair and trouble. Oh unchanging God, change me. Here’s my heart. Let it beat the song of simplicity.
Now, as always, God [discloses] Himself to "babes" and hides Himself in thick darkness from the wise and the prudent. We must simplify our approach to Him. We must strip down to essentials (and they will be found to be blessedly few). We must put away all effort to impress, and come with the guileless candor of childhood. If We do this, without doubt God will quickly respond.—A. W. Tozer in The Pursuit of God
The essential element in the life of a saint is simplicity, and Jesus Christ makes the motive of godliness gloriously simple.—Oswald Chambers in Studies in the Sermon on the Mount
One blustery weekend I was strolling with my little boy on an Atlantic beach. We were scaling clamshells into the onshore wind and watching them curve back to us. I don't know why this was fun. But on that morning scaling clamshells seemed the like the best of all possible things to do. After awhile I looked at my watch. It was lunchtime. We left the beach reluctantly. Only after we sat down to eat did I wonder why had I stopped the game. What is so important about noon? Why must we be hypnotized by the clock? My boy and I went back to the beach after lunch, but the mood was gone. The clamshells and the wind did nothing for us now but blow sand in our eyes.—Max Gunther in The Weekenders
©2001 Daniel York ARR. Reveration is the weekly devotional ministry of First Cause. If you would like to receive these devotionals go to www.firstcause.org and click on the “Click here to receive weekly devotionals” box. Unlimited permission to copy this devotional without altering text or profiteering is allowed subject to inclusion of this copyright notice.
Ecclesiastes 12:10-The Teacher sought to find delightful sayings and to accurately write words of truth. (Holman CSB)