In April 2014 I began a journey of studying and, literally, living like Jesus and his guys modeled for us.
James 1:27 has become my mantra: Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.
With this verse in mind, I began an experiment that I told myself I would do for one year. I began experimenting with making changes in my home, family, and way of living. Each new thing I attempted to implement needed to have a “yes” answer to one, some, or all of the following questions:
- Does this love God?
- Does this love myself?
- Does this love others?
- Does this love the earth?
In approaching each new idea as an experiment, I was able to be easy on myself when something didn’t work out well. When an idea didn’t work out well, I was also able to let it go and try something else. If it DID work, I was able to keep the idea as a permanent change.
Some things that did not go so great were making my own laundry products, the no-poo shampoo method, purchasing strictly from local businesses, and bringing legions of people along with me on this crazy-beautiful journey.
Some things that stuck are going paper free in the kitchen, using laundry products that create less waste, not getting my hair and nails done and putting that money towards adoption costs, spending less wastefully, purchasing gifts and eating out primarily at local businesses, and teaching a small group of people what I am learning along the way and watching them be dedicated and change themselves and the world around them one little step and change at a time.
During this year I have come to be in love with the beauty of adoption and the tangible picture it gives the world of God adopting us. I have learned to ask for help. I have learned to be more caring to the earth and myself and others around me. I have learned more about authentic Christianity this year than I ever have in my whole life. My life is so full and rich.
The greatest, hardest thing that has come out of this year is our decision to adopt. That is how I will end this year of experimentation and begin a new one. We are about midway through the adoption process and I am so excited to see what happens next! Who joins our family!
I began this experiment thinking I would do it for one year and then move on to the next “thing”. I have learned so much and long so much to continue this experiment, that has become a lifestyle, that I will never be able to complete all the things I now wish to do/be/try in one lifetime.
I hope you begin your own experiment. I hope you make your own new journey. I hope you learn so much that you are not able to contain it. I hope you choose to go, be, and do!
You can see updates about our adoption and pitch in, if you want, here: http://gofundme.com/mpe1kc