It’s Complicated…

By: Ms. O

“It’s complicated.”

I have heard that statement more than once in my life. At times I get sucked in…thinking I can work my way through the problem and come out the victor…ready, set, CHARGE…only to realize that it is much bigger than me…and I admit defeat.

Math is not a friend of mine. Sure, you math minded people can take some algebraic equation and act as if you are doing simple addition. Me? Hmmmm…no.  The worst was word problems. It would start off simple…Jo had ten apples…he gave away four…found ten more…stepped on one third of them….ran into an apple cart and picked up sixty percent more…blah blah blah blah blah…who cares. I will go buy my own apples…make them Honeycrisp…I’ll pay top dollar. Too many twists and turns, switching gears…and I’m lost.

It just gets….complicated.

I love to bake desserts. Hello…I love sweets….probably not a good combination. There were times I would see some fancy schmancy dessert on the cover of Southern Living…think I am the next Julia Child and pay high dollar for the magazine…and the ingredients…confident that I could replicate it. Let’s just say, I realized after throwing away many unrecognizable attempts…wasting money…time…and a way too much chocolate…that I am a simple girl. I like comfort food that takes less than two dozen ingredients. I don’t want to have to be precise…I don’t like terms that I have to google to understand…and it does not have to look like a masterpiece…it simply needs to taste good.  Frankly I would have loved to see how many attempts it took to make that cover worthy dessert until it turned out the way it did. I will take simple any day over intricate…taking more than an hour to make…desserts that are way too….complicated.

There were many years that I tried to be something…someone…I was not. I would see outfits that looked so cute on slim svelte figures and convince myself it would look the same on me.  Passing by make up counters, I would be suckered into thinking that if I bought a purse full of their products, magically….miraculously…the picture perfect model they use to represent their line…would be what I would see after I played…dress up.  And hair…wow…the biggest challenge of all time. When I was in my high school years it was my goal to have hair that was full…flowing…thick…curly….all adjectives that described…someone else. I tried perms…body waves…curling irons…hot rollers…and then a ton of hair spray. In the end I realized that was just not me. I am a jeans…flowy shirt…minimal make up…as in I wear it so rarely that it expires before I use it all….and my hair works best when I let it do what it wants. I know that being something I am not wears me out…makes me look like I am trying to be someone I am not…I am more of a simple girl…and do all I can to avoid the wide world of glamour…it’s too complicated…for me.

Have you ever felt like you'll never get all of the Jesus Rules right? And since you can't, then why bother at all? YOU ARE NOT ALONE. But you need to know that all Jesus wants is….

When I gave my life to the Lord I will admit I went into panic mode. Being the people pleaser I am, I knew I had to go into overdrive to go much higher so that I could please the Lord. I listened to how people prayed…wondering how they were so free in their dialogue with the Almighty.  I was amazed…and petrified…at others vast knowledge of scripture. I wondered how in the world I could get all this “Christian living”….right. Would this be too complicated for me to handle…could I cut it?

He has told you, O mortal, what is good;

    and what does the Lord require of you

but to do justice, and to love kindness,

    and to walk humbly with your God?

                                            Micah 6:8

I was shown this passage once…by a friend who wanted me to see the shear power of simplicity. As I struggled to figure out how to serve the Lord…and live FULLY for Him…I missed the forest for the trees.

God has told me what is good…HIM…and this great love He has for me. And what does He require of me? Memorizing all of the Old Testament? Sure that would be incredible…and amazing…but not plausible…for me. Do my prayers have to contain theology…SAT quality words that show my affection? I would have to carry a dictionary with me…two…Websters…and a Bible Dictionary.

What God asks me to do is simple…

Do justice…as in do what I can to level out the playing field. Help out those who need a hand up…see what breaks His heart…and stand in the gap showing mercy…and do what I can to further the healing that needs to happen.

Seek the kindness that He has placed in my heart and don’t be afraid to show it. Sure there will be times it might be misunderstood…or thrown back in my face…but that should not keep me from doing all I can to be…loving…and kind…without wondering if it is “deserved”…that is not my role…that is what would make this task…complicated…so go back to simple.Just…be…kind.

And finally…to walk humbly with God. Don’t try to take the lead….don’t fall too far behind…keep in step with Him. He has created me to be…me. It is me that makes that more complicated…thinking I need to be taking charge…trying to figure His next move for me…when instead I need to walk in joyful obedience with Him.

Life can be so complicated. Way too many choices…dozens of decisions that we make from the moment we wake up till we collapse in bed. Why do we make it so hard to serve the Lord?

He did not want it to be so elusive that we would get frustrated and give up. He asks us to be…Christ like…which may seem complicated…but it truly is not. That does not mean it will be easy…that is a different story…but it is worth the challenge…each and every day.

Clear your mind…stop trying to figure it out…so you can take control. Believe me when I say this is a hard concept for me…as in HUGE. But the way I look at it…He did the hard part for us…so I need to “uncomplicate” my efforts…and be ready to be simply devoted to serve the Lord. The great part is…He doesn’t care if my hair looks great.

…amen…and amen.