I’m still plugging along with Almost Amish I love it and am constantly feeling convicted and encouraged. I am going a tad slower than the rest of the group, but it is ok. I will finish and drink in the ideas and implement them in our lives. I keep purging, purging, purging. We are getting rid of stuff and making room in our schedules to practice hospitality and simply to be.
Small and local leads to saner lives.
I have to admit, when I saw this chapter title I laughed. Really? Simplicity? Isn’t that what this is all about? How is she going to explain and implement the idea of “simplicity” in one chapter? “Simplicity involves cutting back on two major kinds of stuff- the kind that fills our houses and the kind that fills our calendars.” We have been doing great at getting rid of the stuff that FILLS our home. I really don’t need things just to take up space on a shelf. I’ve learned that I can have an empty shelf and an empty night on the calendar.
Sleeth also talks about simplicity in our community. Knowing our neighbors, buying local and investing in relationships the way God intended for us to. I love the idea of buying local. Hubby and I have often talked about how we would love to know the all of the farmers who grow our food. Luckily we live in an area where this is possible. I’ll admit right now I only shop at the local farm if it is convenient for me. When I do, I am so glad that I have, but I sadly do not go out of my way to shop there nor do I deny us certain produce if it is not available at the farm. I need to work on this area, and I am committed to doing so.
Knowing our neighbors. Sleeth talks about the emphasis that the Amish place on knowing their neighbors. The neighborhood that we moved into a little under a year ago is big into neighborliness. Our neighborhood was designed in the 50s, so our houses are close, our garages aren’t attached to our houses and even if they were, they are no where near big enough to put a car in. Our houses lack some conveniences and for some reason, people haven’t updated them, for example, we set up sprinklers in the yards (they aren’t automatic). We also live in a town that is about 75 degrees all year long, so we spend a lot of time outside. These things force us outside and make it almost impossible to live in a bubble. I love it. Mostly… This weekend I think that we got the tiniest picture of community among the Amish. Our doorbell rang at like 9:30 on Friday night, it was our neighbor kid telling us they were butchering a pig and asked if they could borrow some things. We lent them and offered to help. (Gratefully they declined, a seasoned professional was there.) But sure enough out our bedroom window we could see the pig hanging from their deck. Then on Saturday, we invited to go partake in the eating of the butchered animal. I have to say, it was a little… tough, but we stood in their kitchen, talking with neighbors and eating boar that we had in a way helped to bring to the table, even if it was only because we had lent some tools.