While fervent shoppers scoured the shelves for the perfect holiday gift or stood in a lengthy checkout counter line on Black Friday this year, I was far from the excitement, tucked away in a small northern Minnesota town that my aunt and uncle call home.
My parents and I hopped in the car around the time many of these shoppers were already heading home, and we cheerfully watched as the crowded store parking lots and traffic faded in the distance as we made our way out of the city.
Time slowed over the next few days, and the pace of small-town life washed peacefully over us. We drank coffee inside the local coffee shop filled with mismatched chairs. I spent hours playing cards with my cousins. We sat at the kitchen table and chatted long after we feasted on a home-cooked dinner.
My parents and I laughed at the quirkiness of the town’s annual fish house parade and waved as the public access TV camera found us in the crowd.
It was a simple weekend filled with laughter, family and thankfulness for all that God has blessed us with.
In our daily lives, things are not as simple. Relationships are complicated. Jobs are stressful. Futures are overflowing with questions. It’s difficult to find simple and to maintain simple amidst our hectic lives, but it doesn’t take a long weekend in a remote location to grab hold of simple.
Spend your afternoon work break taking a walk outside. Check your personal e-mail only once per day. Schedule time in your Outlook calendar to exercise, regroup or pray. Find your piece of simple every day in whichever form fits your life and look to Jesus, whose humble and simple life changed the course of history, for true peace.