I get asked a lot of questions on my social media channels. Some of the questions are as simple as “what camera do you use for your photos”. Other questions are complicated, like “how do you edit all your photos”. Different photos call for a different editing style. So it’s always tough to answer that one.
There’s another question I get fairly often, and this one pertains to my decision to lead a simpler, more minimalist lifestyle. The question often goes “how do you do it”. In the past, I have struggled to answer questions like this one simply because there was not one decision that resulted in me choosing the life I lead today. Neither did I one day crack the code on how to do it all perfectly. Instead, the life I lead today has been a culmination of events and experiences all of which have shaped my views on different aspects of life.
There is one other aspect of choosing to lead a simpler and more minimalist lifestyle, and I choose to call that ‘the grace factor’. If you are a Christian, the word grace is not new to you. If you aren’t a Christian, a pretty simplistic definition of grace would be “unmerited favor or even unconditional love”. You can also find a pretty succinct definition in this got questions post.
Over the years, the more I live simply, the more grace there is to do so. Grace has allowed me to find my identity in something so much more than myself. It has allowed me to realize my identity. It has solidified my knowledge of what it means to be a christian minimalist.
So where do we find or see grace?
Grace is in the simple moments of our lives. Grace insulates us from life’s harsh realities. It gives us the privilege to find joy in the mundane and forgettable everyday moments. It is by grace that I can find beauty in simplicity. It is by grace that I deIight in Christ as he meets me in the everyday moments we often overlook. The real reason to choose slower living.
Grace humbles us. It is by grace that I can find the humility to embrace simpler living. To live a life simplicity even though I have the capacity to lead otherwise. It is grace that keeps me from letting material possessions define my worth. Grace allows me to freely be (who I was created to be).
I don’t do simple living because I am a pro at this, I do it because I am aware of the unconditional love that I receive and that challenges me to extend that to someone who needs the same. This could be choosing to buy ethically made clothes in order to give a fair living wage to the one who made my clothes. It could also mean shopping at my local farmers market or co-op because it helps keep local farmers afloat because grace calls us to serve one another (1 pet 1:10).
The sweetest part about grace, it allows me to fail at this. It does not call for my perfection, it doesn’t require me to be a perfect minimalist. It simply requires me to accept it like the gift that is is, trust in God, and try everyday to live like he has called me to. Grace strengthens me to keep going (2 Tim 2:1)
True grace, when it falls on a broken humble follower of the way will lead a person to see his inability to live according to God’s standards – Mario Alleckna
I hope you find grace today! Rest in the assurance that there is abundance of grace for you.