A Message from Reclaiming Earth Committee

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Voluntary simplicity: Where have we heard that before? Yes, we are in the season of Lent, which might propel us to re-evaluate some of our values for earth but….have you considered voluntary simplicity of life to be a component of integral ecology brought to our attention through Laudato Si?  Hmmm.

In A Matter of Spirit, a publication by Intercommunity Peace and Justice Center, we read: “We see simple living as a slowing down — slowing down to reflect, to offer attention and care for the other living beings in our orbit, to breathe. We see simple living as reveling in the miraculous abundance of life — love, nature, music, quiet, laughter, friendship. It is not asceticism; it’s the opposite of sacrifice. Rather than forbidding ourselves to have things we do not yet have, simple living is embracing all that we have already. It’s making a slew of small choices about how to spend our time, how to spend our money and how to invest in our communities”. (The Invitation to Live Simply, Amy Potthast, p. 3)

In a differing publication, Christian Simplicity: A Gospel Value, Ronald Rolheiser writes: “Scientists tell us that every second, inside the sun the equivalent of 4 million (4,000,000) elephants are being transformed into light; an irretrievable, one-time gift…In this generosity the sun reflects the abundance of God, a largess that invites us to also be generous, to have big hearts, to risk more in giving ourselves away in self-sacrifice, to witness to God’s abundance.

“…Instinctively we move more naturally to self-preservation and security. By nature, we fear and we hoard. Because of this, whether we are poor or not, we tend to work out of a sense of scarcity, fearing always that we don’t have enough, and that we need to be careful in what we give away, that we can’t afford to be too generous.

“But God belies this, as does nature. God is prodigal, abundant, generous, and wasteful beyond our small fears and imaginations. Nature, too, is stunningly overwhelming and prodigal. The scope of our universe, even just so far as we know it, is almost unimaginable. So too is the abundant (abundance)….character of God”.  (The Abundance of God as an Invitation to Generosity, Ronald Rolheiser, p. 113)

Does any of this resonate with you? Pray, reflect and listen. The Holy Spirit just may be whispering in your ear.