Simple Joys and Living to Glorify God

“Have nothing in your home that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful.” William Morris 1880

We recently downsized and I am evaluating what are the things in my life that detract from the passions, gifts and purposes God has for my life. I am considering quotes like this but adding a Christian perspective. I have tweaked William Morris’ quote to fit my viewpoint. “Have nothing in my home that I do not consider useful or believe to be beautiful or helps me to fully pursue and glorify God.”

“Have nothing in my home that I do not consider useful or believe to be beautiful or helps me to fully pursue and glorify God.”

I am pondering that and looking to rid my life of what detracts from the pursuit of and glorification of God. What things or events detract from this? How do I best use my time and energy to fulfill that? What things need edited from my life? What things are good and need given more time and attention? Are there things or disciplines I am missing I need to add to my life?

We have downsized and are preparing our home for aging in place before we are too old to do that. Also making it safe for me with my chemical sensitivity from Mast Cell Activation Syndrome (MCAS) as well as serving me with my multiple chronic health issues. A smaller home takes less time and energy to clean but quickly looks cluttered if too many extra things. My spirit is calmer and more focused when my home is not in chaos or disorder. That may be due partly to my ADD tendencies. So I am prayerfully trying to decide what things to sell, donate or bless others with and what truly serves us and helps us serve and honor God.

I am an artistic and creative soul and beauty greatly speaks to me so could never be an austere minimalist. God has made me/ us in His image and part of His image as creator is His putting creativity within us. God has gifted some more than others. I know being creative in home decor, garden design, painting, sewing quilting and writing poetry is something I will continue. My big take away is what things do I edit in my life to allow for those times as well as God’s purposes?

Below are some of my recent projects:

Rose watercolor I painted July 2020
Pansies painted for youngest granddaughter March 2021
Watercolor Painted for oldest granddaughter in March 2021
Watercolor for second granddaughter April 2021

In the spring of 2011 I was waiting three months to discover if I had acute leukemia and would have months to live or a chronic blood cancer that would alter my life but not shorten it. God made used a series of events and spoke to me in my heart in a very dramatic way. He made it clear to me that regardless of my circumstances or health I needed to be a woman of joy and gratitude who is engaged in others around me. I began then to practice gratitude daily and each morning recount at least three things I am grateful for today. I also pray each morning that God will enable me to be a woman of joy. For the most part He has answered those prayers. If my joy were based on circumstances instead of God I would most likely become a bitter and complaining woman. For more about this read my blog post “The Choice.”

https://joyfulrefuge.com/2017/03/23/the-choice/

Recently we brought home a standard poodle puppy who has been such a source of joy!

Noticing the simple joys around me daily helps me foster my joy and gratitude to God. Watching antics of a puppy, seeing God’s handiwork in the spring beauty all around, sharing laughter or a hug with a loved one, watching a sunset, visiting in person (a rare thing in this pandemic while being immunocompromised) and praying with a sister in Christ or watching a bumblebee flitting around pollinating blossoms all are joy filled and satisfying and point me to God.

This week I have been creating beauty and usefulness outdoors as plant flowers and our raised bed organic garden. I find some of my best times of conversing with God in prayer and contemplating what changes are needed in my life happen while my hands are working in the soil.

In my quiet times, I am researching what God desires of me in scriptures and journaling. I need to know what I am to do and keep in my life before I can do much editing. I have another three weeks in my month long break between leading Bible studies and my fasting from most social media to discover more what my life will look like. Over the next weeks hoping to include some conversations with my husband as his godly wisdom and insight is so valuable and he knows me better than anybody except God.

Have you edited things to better enable you to fully pursue God and glorify Him? What things did you remove or add to your life? I would love to hear your answers.

Blessings,

Deb

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