Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Simple Abundance

Now I remember why "Simple Abundance" is one of my favorite books. This daily devotional is a great pratical reminder of how I want to live my life. I've been toying around with the wording for a personal mission statement to guide me during the year. After reading today's message in Simple Abundance, I realized that I don't need to recreate the wheel, Sarah Ban Breathnacht describes it better than I ever could.

The term "Simple Abundance" says it all. defines these two words as follows:

simple: not elaborate or artificial; unassuming; not complicated or complex, and Sarah adds clarity of form and thought.

abundance: an extremely plentiful or oversufficient quantity or supply; an overflowing fullness; wealth

Using these definitions as a basis, Sarah defines simple abundance as "an inner journey, a spiritual and practical course in creative living, a tapestry of contentment." That's awesome!

That simple definition contains so much insight. It's an inner journey, meaning that it is ours and ours alone, a journey of our choosing, it comes from within us and is not predicated on external events. We can embark on this inner journey regardless of our external circumstances. We don't need to wait until the bills are paid, the kids are grown, we get married (or divorced), we get that new job. We can embark on this journey NOW.

It's both spiritual and practical. It's interesting that both words are included here. So often people focus on spirituality, but they forget that it's faith and love in action that matters. We're talking about a lifestyle, not a concept here.

I love the word creative. As a wanna-be artist, anything that involves creativity definitely has my attention. But what's great about that word in this context for me is that not only does it inspire me to live my dream of filling my life and home with "art", made by me and by others, but it also reminds me that God and I together are the artists of my life as well. God has given me the opportunity, the resources, and the desire to create a life that is pleasing both to Him and to me.

Here's what Sarah has to say about Simple Abundance:

At the heart of Simple Abundance is an authentic awakening, one that resonates within your soul; you already possess all you need to be genuinely happy. The way you reach that awareness is through an inner journey that brings about an emotional, psychological, and spiritual transformation. A deep inner shift in your reality occurs, aligning you with the creative energy of the Universe. Such change is possible when you invite Spirit to open up the eyes of your awareness to the abundance that is already yours.

... [There are] six threads of abundant living which, when woven together, produce a tapestry of contentment that wraps us in inner peace, well-being, happiness, and a sense of security. First there is gratitude. When we do a mental and spiritual inventory of all that we have, we realize that we are very rich indeed. Gratitude gives way to simplicity - the desire to clear out, pare down, and realize the essentials of what we need to live truly well. Simplicity brings with it order, both internally and externally. A sense of order in our life brings us harmony. Harmony provides us with the inner peace we need to appreicate the beauty that surrounds us each day, and beauty opens us to joy. But just as with any beautiful needlepoint tapestry, it is difficult to see where one stitch ends and another begins. So it is with Simple Abundance.

Pick up the needle with me and make the first stitch on the canvas of your life. Invite Spirit to open up the eyes of your inner awareness. Be still and wait expectantly, knowing that in the warp and woof of your daily life as it exists today are the golden threads of a simply abundant tomorrow.

Now that's the way to start the New Year!

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