Live Well

My Minimalism Manifesto

June 23, 2020

“Things that matter most must never be at the mercy of things that matter least.” -Goethe

I want peace. Minimalism helps me embrace the peace Jesus offers in this messy world.

I want focus. Minimalism removes distractions.

I want good stewardship. Minimalism limits what I’m responsible for.

I want loving relationships. Minimalism helps me give my attention to people not stuff.

I want rest. Minimalism takes a lot of effort initially, but reduces effort eventually. 

I want rhythms. Minimalism encourages “flow,” where doing the right thing is easy and convenient.

I want fun. Minimalism reduces choice fatigue and helps my soul delight in the daily. 

Gone awry:

Minimalism is performance. It’s another list of rules I have to live up to. It says “how could you let this build up? You’re not doing enough, you can’t even keep up with what you have, how could you handle more?”

Minimalism is resentment. It’s another list of rules everyone else has to live up to. It’s superiority that I’ve found a better way and confusion that they seem happier with their way.

Minimalism is dissatisfaction. It’s a liar that says “you’ll be at peace when the mess is removed. Hurry to clean it up.” The world is broken and my ache to have it restored will never be satisifed in this life.

Minimalism is envy. It wants white space instead of mess and quiet instead of noise, even where messes and noise belong.

Minimalism is distraction. It’s a good thing, twisted and broken. The tool to focus that has warped and distracted me from what I’m meant to receive and meant to do.

This is what I want. I want to enter my home and have my attention on what’s most important, especially Cheyne and Rylee. I know I will still need to do laundry, put the diaper bag away, make dinner and pick up dishes. But I want those things to take very little of my mental energy. I want to talk to someone or listen to a podcast while I tidy. To make dinner with Rylee instead of feeling like it’s dinner or Rylee. When I see the house a disaster, I don’t want to feel overwhelmed. I want an ease in my soul. A peace to know that it will only take a little time and mental energy to clean it up. I want my busy hands to match a quiet spirit as I joyfully and peacefully do the work that God has given me to do. I want to be Brother Lawrence inside my home. Peeling carrots and talking to God.

I live with less to enjoy what matters most.

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