Sunday, August 8, 2010

"Simplify, simplify."

"Our life is frittered away by detail. . . . Simplicity, simplicity, simplicity! I say, let your affairs be as two or three, and not a hundred or a thousand; instead of a million count half a dozen, and keep your accounts on your thumbnail. . . . Simplify, simplify." (Henry David Thoreau, from Walden)

Advice more relevant today than when he wrote it over 150 years ago. No reader would be poorer for the investment of time required to read Thoreau's major works. He is a magnificent and highly idiosyncratic thinker and writer, probably the finest America has produced.

To return to my last from that brief obiter dictum, I will once again let another have the floor. (This approach to blogging could get to be a habit.) I was much impressed by an article in the Salvation Army's April 10 "War Cry", "Divine Interruption" by Whitney Von Lake Hopler. I don't have the space, or permission, to reprint the entire, fairly short, article, but here are the six simple points, plus one brief exerpt, she made.
1. Make yourself available for God's assignments.
2. Take time to actively listen for God's voice.
3. Focus on God's plans rather than your own.
4. Keep eternity in view. . . . Remember that not all urgent activities are important ones.
5. Pray for the grace to respond to people's needs with compassion instead of irritation.
6. Don't let fear stop you.

"The War Cry" is published biweekly and is well worth $10 (yes $10) for one year, $19 for two years, or a whopping $28 for three years. If you are interested in subscribing call 1-800-SAL-ARMY. I don't think any Christian would find it money ill spent.

23 comments:

Longtime reader said...

A very inspiring essay, Christian. And I can tell that what you read in the Salvation Army material inspired you.

Southern California said...

Really nice blog post! The magazine you quoted from has got to have more spiritual lift than the current periodicals, in my view. Thanks for tip.

Cambridge said...

I agree with your assessment of Thoreau--well worth spending time on. Another good essay, Christian.

Phoenix, AZ said...

Very helpful blog posting, Christian. Got a lot out of this one.

From Ohio said...

Yes, as we listen for God's voice, and obey what He tells us to do, life can't help but be more simple in the right way,more harmonious and productive. I have found this to be true in my study and practice of Christian Science over the years.
Excellent essay, Christian.

Anonymous said...

Love your blog. And I just might take you up on that suggestion about subscribing to the periodical you mention.
Thanks!

Hartford, CT said...

A blog post or two back, I think it was, there was some commenting about whether Mary Baker Eddy would make use of the Internet. I doubt that she would have the time to blog! but I do feel she would applaud what you are doing through your website for her Cause.

Anonymous said...

拒絕冒險和成長的人,終將被生命的潮流陶汰。..................................................

St. Louis,MO said...

Inspiring thoughts in this one, Christian. Appreciate your sharing with us (me).

Thanks much said...

Someone commented that the War Cry has to be more uplifting than our periodicals are these days and one reason may be that they are staying true to what their Founder had in mind for his ministry. Wasn't it William Booth of England? Our magazines sadly have strayed far from what Mary Baker Eddy was God-inspired to establish her periodicals for.

Carl said...

A very fine website you've got here. Glad it was mentioned to me by a friend.

God bless you said...

Can we ever give our loving heavenly Father enough thought and time and obedience? No!

CS (Los Angeles) said...

As someone who has read your blog posts for many months, and consider you a true-blue, clean Christian Scientist, feel I can go with your recommendation on that periodical.
Thanks!

Best, (West Coast) said...

Dear Writer,
I truly lovew the way you are able to expresss such deep thoughts in such a clear way.

Portland, OR said...

Keep doing such inspiring essays. A help to me today, Christian.

Doubtful said...

With all due respect, I don't know why you need to turn to that magazine for those 6 points when you have our Leader's writings!

LowlyWise said...

Thanks for the comment on Thoreau. Shouldn't come as any surprise to Christian Scientists, though, as we've been marching to a different drummer for more than a century. Perhaps you could argue that the CS establishment has itself become an orthodox drumbeat and the likes of Christian are now the different drummer. In any event, keep on drumming!

Oxford said...

Yes, as the previous regular commenter to these pages pointed out, the author of this website is standing out in the CS field--in a positive, helpful way.

Upper Midwest said...

Nice piece, Christian. Always take something away to munch on mentally.

Anonymous said...

You rock! (For a CS, that is.)

Anonymous said...

imo the CS periodicals are overpriced, and the cost of the Salvation Army magazine underscores that opinion

Chicago, IL said...

Dear Excellent Writer,
You've got an inspiring blog here, glad a friend mentioned it to me.

江仁趙雲虹昆 said...

Never put off till tomorrow what may be done today..................................................................