Thursday Thoughts: Simplicity

From a young age, we are recruited into a real-life game of Bigger or Better. We are indoctrinated to believe that bigger is better. We have, as a society, become temporally fat, rather than spiritually fat. We live in a society primed for indulgence. (See, for example, 2 Ne. 12:6-9/Isa. 2:6-9) In all this excess, there is emptiness. Those who have, are often not satisfied. Those who have not, are often in a constant state of want. So where is our place in this?

“Come, my brethren, every one that athirsteth, come ye to thebwaters; and he that hath no cmoney, come buy and eat; yea, come buy wine and milk without money and without price. Wherefore, do not spend money for that which is of no worth, nor your alabor for that which cannot bsatisfy. Hearken diligently unto me, and remember the words which I have spoken; and come unto the Holy One of Israel, and cfeast upon that which perisheth not, neither can be corrupted, and let your soul delight in fatness.” (2 Ne. 9:50-51)

Let our souls delight in spiritual fatness and in spiritual abundance, rather than temporal fatness and temporal abundance.

How do we do that?

1. Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf said in “Of Things That Matter Most” October 2010 general conference, “I think most of us intuitively understand how important the fundamentals are. It is just that we sometimes get distracted by so many things that seem more enticing. Printed material, wide-ranging media sources, electronic tools and gadgets—all helpful if used properly—can become hurtful diversions or heartless chambers of isolation. Yet amidst the multitude of voices and choices, the humble Man of Galilee stands with hands outstretched, waiting. His is a simple message: “Come, follow me.” And He does not speak with a powerful megaphone but with a still, small voice. It is so easy for the basic gospel message to get lost amidst the deluge of information that hits us from all sides.”

We might need to put our lives on a diet. Just like with a regular diet, we have to watch our intake. As Elder Uchtdorf said, we should not get distracted by things that seem more enticing, but that ultimately, hold little worth. And then, we need to exercise our spiritual muscles and “Come, follow me.”

2.  Elder Uchtdorf also said, “Let us simplify our lives a little. Let us make the changes necessary to refocus our lives on the sublime beauty of the simple, humble path of Christian discipleship—the path that leads always toward a life of meaning, gladness, and peace.”

Do we need to make changes to refocus and reflect the priorities we set? Are we letting unimportant things eclipse our relationship with God or with our family members? Are we confusing programs with people? Do we need to let go of things and activities that are not truly benefitting us or our families?

3. “My dear brothers and sisters, we would do well to slow down a little, proceed at the optimum speed for our circumstances, focus on the significant, lift up our eyes, and truly see the things that matter most. Let us be mindful of the foundational precepts our Heavenly Father has given to His children that will establish the basis of a rich and fruitful mortal life with promises of eternal happiness. They will teach us to do ‘all these things … in wisdom and order; for it is not requisite that [we] should run faster than [we have] strength. [But] it is expedient that [we] should be diligent, [and] thereby … win the prize.’ Brothers and sisters, diligently doing the things that matter most will lead us to the Savior of the world. That is why ‘we talk of Christ, we rejoice in Christ, we preach of Christ, we prophesy of Christ, … that [we] may know to what source [we] may look for a remission of [our] sins.’ In the complexity, confusion, and rush of modern living, this is the ‘more excellent way.'”

 

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