Tuesday, April 8, 2014

simplify to love

Ever feel like you want to do something, but you can't...because you have "too much stuff to do"? I have too often wanted to do a few somethings, but didn't because my "to do's" were piled so high I just felt paralyzed by it all. So instead I did nothing. When I continually heard over and over to clothe myself with love, I knew it was a "something" I couldn't ignore. But the depth that came with that little task overwhelmed me.  I needed to break it up into a bunch of smaller pieces. I decided to start in small areas in my life and work my way through my list of places I could wear love better around in my life. Oh boy, there are many...

One of the first places that made my list and where I wanted to wear love...is my home. 

I wasn't sure where or how to start here, but I knew that the things of my home often kept me from loving the people of my home.

I have been a slave to the things of this world too many times. I fall into a cycle of confusing my needs with my wants. It usually finishes with me being empty in the heart area and full in my responsibilities area. A closer look will show you that by buying, collecting, consuming, hoarding, having, and getting things will actually only empty a home. Not fill it. Home is where the heart is after all. When you walk through my front door, I want you to feel full of life...full of love...full of time to sit and be home with us here. And I don't have time enough to even open my door and let people in when I am spending all my time trying to keep my home up. 

Realizing I was a slave to my things felt ick. Really ick. Especially when I knew that too often I had spent time either gathering things for my home or organizing my things in my home...cleaning, sorting, picking up, cleaning more, and keeping track of what filled our life. Things. Stuff. And then as if a light-bulb went off...

I realized life would be lived better and I could love better if I had less to take care of...to manage...to clean...to organize...to oversee. 

This is where my deep desire to simplify my home started. I wanted home to be manageable in a way that gave life to the ones in it and not pulled away from their soul when they settled here. To breathe life and love into people in my home meant one thing. Simplify.

Simplify what surrounded us. Simplify what we did here. Simplify how we lived here. Simplify what we used here. Simplified the stuff so we could surrender to love in a way that He calls us... love. Just love. 

Thursday, April 3, 2014


Winters are dang long in the Mid-west. But just because I'm stuck indoors doesn't mean I have to sit my days away. Of course, with 4 children, there is no sitting anyways... but I like to think that I would be motivated to clean out even if I didn't have 4 kids or long winter days to survive. Yes, I said survive. Once the New Year rolled around, I had only one new goal on my plate. It seems in more places then not, less is more. Even new years resolutions. Giving myself one, instead of ten, seemed attainable. I am a goal oriented gal anyways, so I was giving it all I got...to this one goal...Wear love. More on that specific topic another day, but for today...and a few postings...I am going to pen through what my heart has learned as I simplified around here as I've been challenged to wear love daily.

What does simplifying have to do with wearing love? Everything. I think.

What does wear love even mean? I'm still figuring that out.

I keep having Colossians 3:14 grace my presence. Above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds us all together in perfect harmony.

And on January 1st, along with the rest of the world, I made a new year resolution. I landed on one simple, yet not, goal for myself...

So began my journey to clothe myself in love and simplify so I could. 

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

home is where the hearts is

Ten years today feels like a million yesterdays. Ten years ago today I met my other half, with a baby boy in my arms, to sign away what felt like everything we had and left with a set of keys to call our own. Not only did we hold that set of keys in our hands, but a handful of dreams as well. We had plans and a new home and a new baby and life was looking to be in our favor that day...ten years ago. We had a set of keys to unlock our new home and the plans we made would now follow. Ten years ago, that's what we thought. I thought.

When you get the keys to life, you tend to think you know what stands behind the door. As if those golden keys that open a door can actually tell you which way to go once you get inside.

We stood upon our new home and set our plans into action. And what we found was this...

We can kick and scream to make our plans work... or we can bend down to His plans and unlock the only door that will lead us home.

Many are the plans in our hearts. Many were the plans we brought with us that day ten years ago. And many, many times...we've had to close the door to our ways and open the door to His.

We bought our home here and brought so many expectations with us. Dreams and ideas of how we thought life was supposed to look...supposed to happen...supposed to be. What I found in all those supposed to be places was a lot of heartache. A lot of insecurities when our plans didn't happen in our ways and in our time. A lot of fear. A lot of pride. A lot of brokenness.

The beautiful thing about brokenness is that it is only broken...not dead. Broken dreams and broken plans only leave room for something better to be discovered. More often then not, the broken things of life end up better then before. Just don't stay in the broken places once you've realized it's broke... you're broke. I was broke. Take that key to life and turn it, open it, live in it. And rebuild. Broken plans always close one door, but the door that opens for you is always the way to go...

Ten years ago I couldn't set down the dreams in my hands very well. What stood behind the door when I unlocked it was one room. One dwelling place. It doesn't matter how many other doors lead away from this one room... the Truth is... they all lead back to Him.

No matter which door you decide to go through, take the key of Life...take the brokenness and rebuild and dwell in His house. Our ways are His ways when we invite Him in to our dwelling place. Our homes, our hearts... Our lives. Broken, but always being rebuilt as He unlocks a little more of Him and a little less of us. Home, truly where the heart is.