Thursday, July 22, 2010

Where The Simple Life Is Not

"So I saw that there is nothing better for a man than to enjoy his work, because that is his lot." ... Ecclesiastes 3:22

Well, I think I figured-out a couple of the world's greatest mysteries.


You know how people in Blogland (especially) tell you that if you move out to the country and buy an old farmhouse on a few acres with a few animals you'll be all set for The Simple Life?

Well, they lie.

According to the above verse, those people must surely be Workers. They discovered that, if you want to have a whole lot of enjoyment, move out to the country because you'll have a whole lot of work to do out there. Work, work, work, enjoy, enjoy, enjoy. That must be the motto within their heads.

And that's fine. Good and wonderful, even, especially if you're into living according to Bible verses such as the one, above.

But really, can we please stop calling it The Simple Life? Because oh my, it's not simple. It's hard. It's complicated. It's only for the very educated and education takes time and resources. And farming takes money (don't let anyone tell you it's cheap. It's not.) There's upkeep and digging and planting and fertilizing and gardening and weeding and mulching and repairing tractors and fences and repairing animals, too. And chopping and trimming and mowing and canning and freezing and traveling far to wherever you need to go. And--

It's so not simple.

But for some people, though, it is fulfilling. It's what keeps them happily busily. Occupied. In shape. Humming along. And on most days, that is me. Not all days (who enjoys their work every single day?), but most.

But do not come out here if you want The Simple Life. There's no leisure to be found here. Although, yes, you will loll around in the evenings on your couch or out on the lawn when your eyes and body droop and ache from all the work you did during daylight hours. But it's a happy kind of droop and ache for those who are willing to--yes--work, work, work.

But if you prefer the true Simple Life, stay in town with your supermarket down the block and your automated appliances and packaged foods and small yards. And be happy in your work there. We are all different and we all should live where we're most suited. There's no one right place or way for everyone on the planet to live. There's only one right place for you at this current time in your life and I hope you're living there right at this moment.

And I hope you're enjoying it.


Ecclesiastes 8:15
So I commend the enjoyment of life, because nothing is better for a man under the sun than to eat and drink and be glad. Then joy will accompany him in his work all the days of the life God has given him under the sun.


Kim said...

My grandparents had a farm and I can't remember my grandmother just sit and do nothing. She did sit on the porch, but she was shelling peas, shucking corn, churning butter, or picking pecans while she was sitting. She was the last one to bed and the first one up.
She did all the things she did with a cast iron wood burning stove and no indoor plumbing - well into the seventies.
Of course she didn't have a choice either. :-)

Lisa in Texas = ) said...

Yep- I think it is funny how some people talk of the simple life and try to make it sound like they are living all Little House on the Prairie like - and actually if you go to their houses - you will find that when they the simple life - they really mean "simply the best of everything"
Great post!
Lisa :O)

Tracy said...

LOL - so true, Debra! :)

Echoes From the Hill said...

You are so right, it is not simple. Yet, it keeps one from getting bored, or watching too much television, or spending too much on entertainment. At least I keep telling myself that when there is much work to do!

sunnycalgirl said...

Yes, it's about being content..Philippians 4:11 (:

Nan said...

I think that the simplicity comes from not battling traffic, having a beautiful commute to a job, not living a life of shopping for recreation, experiencing the beauty of nature as a part of daily life - not something one must drive to see. Not simple in terms of work but of life. Also, I have learned to grow things that are easy - like daylilies. I have nothing fussy in my flower gardens. The raised beds in the veg garden have made it incredibly easy - no more tilling, easy weeding, order. We've been here a long time and the work is much less than at the beginning. Wood is the main work. The farm animals are easy - move them across the road once a day, feed them hay in the winter. We have some fewer than we used to. And of course there were little kids all those years ago. I'm not a work-a-holic by any means. I don't can; I freeze. I don't freeze anything that has to be blanched first. I'm all about making things easy, and simple!

Judy said...

I like that I can watch beautiful birds at my feeder, have a woodchuck visit me at my backdoor, enjoy irises, peonies, hydrangeas, black-eyed susans and purple balloon flowers, yet still see CVS out my living room window!

This USED to be the country. Someone just built a city on it.

Oh, and I just LOVE having that art room I dreamed of all my life - right here - in the basement.

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