Contemporary Christian Spirituality Final Paper Part 2

I’m not sure there was a time when my assumptions or beliefs about spirituality were challenged in this course. As I said in the answer to question 1, I was baptized Baptist and spent time in Pentecostal and other Spirit led denominations. They only concept that was new to me and different was the Christian Minimalism. I guess if pushed I could say I was challenged by this because I thought minimalism meant you denied yourself the things you wanted and lived a life that was just the necessities and nothing frilly or fun. Dr. Ehrlich showed us this is not the case because of her red shoes. The concept of the shoes shows though that even those who are living the minimalistic life also wonder sometimes the same things those of us first learning or seeking have as well.

I remember when I saw the minimalism on the syllabus, I wasn’t sure how I felt about that. I thought I would have to give up all the things I am holding onto. I have a lot of shoes that I do wear every year but when I first heard of minimalism, I thought I would have to get rid of all my liturgically colored converse. I mourned the blue, purple, red, green, gold (yes, I have a gold pair for Easter), and rainbow shoes I would need to get rid of. Because minimalism is black and no frills and no fun. That was my thought. Then I read the reading and looked at Dr. Ehrlich’s website and Facebook profile and realized that minimalism isn’t no frills it is minimal. And minimal for me may not be the same minimal for you, but I can live with the minimum for me and that is what makes me a minimalist. It isn’t about what other people think I should have/own as a minimalist; it is purely about my relationship with stuff and God.

Because it seems to me, the real idea behind minimalism is that we keep the stuff at a minimum so that we can keep the important things as a priority. You shall not have any gods before God. God needs to be the priority in our lives and if we have too much stuff that can get in the way of that. Things may not be gods for us, but the more we have and the more we focus on stuff, the greater the possibility they can become gods and try to take the place of the important things. Keeping our minds and life clear so we can focus on God and where the Spirit is guiding us.

I feel like clearing some things that we do not us, or I do not use out of my life would be a great thing to do. The concept of living only with what we need frees us to be more readily movable by the Spirit and that is what we are called to be by God. This is a concept that could be beneficial to my life and something I believe needs to be incorporated into my life.

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