Scripture, Simplifying

Keep It Simple

Did you know that your big toe has only two bones in it while the rest of your toes each have three? Well, you do now. That was the fun fact on my Snapple cap today and it got my friend and I thinking. We both thought that seemed a bit backwards. Could be a sad lack of remembrance of our high school biology lessons, or it could be something more. After all, the big toe is, well, big. It’s important; it seems to do more than the little toes when it comes to balance. Surely it’s more complex on the inside!

I realize this is a stretching of the simile but please let me say it: the big toe isn’t so different from life’s big things. I tend to assume that every occupant of the “things that matter most” category is complicated. They must require a great deal of deliberation, maneuvering and so on and so forth. Could it be that the inner workings of the big things are actually simple? It seems too good to be true for a girl who tends to over-think most everything. In the way that my background tends to influence me, my thoughts on the big toe analogy brought me around to Scripture and the beautiful yet challenging simplicity of life in Christ. Here more than anywhere else, “simple” does not equal small or inconsequential. The calls placed on our lives, the commandments we receive, they’re a big deal. They’re an eternally huge deal. Yet Christ keeps it simple.

  • “Follow me…” (Matthew 5:19)
  • “Let your light so shine before men…” (Matthew 5:16)
  • “Lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven…” (Matthew 6:20)
  • “Do not be anxious about your life…” (Matthew 6:25)
  • “Come to me…” (Matthew 11:28)
  • “Listen to him [Christ]…” (Matthew 17:5)
  • “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind…” (Matthew 22:37)
  • “Love your neighbor as yourself…” (Matthew 22:39)
  • “Make disciples of all nations…” (Matthew 28:19)
  • “You must be born anew… of water and the Spirit…” (John 3:7, 5)
  • “Go, and do not sin again…” (John 8:11)
  • “You also should do as I have done to you…” (John 13:15)
  • “Abide in my love…” (John 15:9)
  • “Be of good cheer, I have overcome the world…” (John 16:33)
  • “Make love your aim…” (1 Corinthians 14:1)
  • “Be imitators of god as beloved children. And walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us…” (Ephesians 5:1-2)
  • “Do nothing from selfishness or conceit but in humility count others better than yourselves…” (Philippians 2:3)
  • “Rejoice…” (Philippians 4:4)
  • “Seek the things that are above, where Christ is…” (Colossians 3:1)
  • “With confidence draw near to the throne of grace…” (Hebrews 4:16)
  • “Do right and let nothing terrify you…” (1 Peter 3:6)
Am I now oversimplifying? Over compensating for my overthinking? Well, perhaps it’s not that the situations, the decisions, the relationships, the risks and so on are all that simple and straightforward. They can all be plenty complicated and difficult. The lens through which we view them though, the avenue by which we approach them, that’s where the simplicity rescues us from ourselves.

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