Just Keep It Simple Anna

I need to have these words on repeat in my head and my heart this year.

When I see so many options, so many “good” things to fill my life, so many paths before me, I need to remember to Just Keep It Simple Anna.

It helps to revisit the beginning of things.

Like what were the first words that were whispered in my heart, before I dared to speak them out loud, before I shared them with others, before I wrote them down and they became a “real” part of my life?

Every fall it seems I need to go back to the beginning.

And look at things with fresh eyes and make sure I’m still on track with what God whispered in my heart way back when.

Make sure all that has been spoken out loud, or shared with others, or written down and become part of “real” life is still in line with those first whispers.

Remember Elijah on the mountain? When he was waiting for the Lord to pass by? He recognized God in the gentle whisper.

Not in the the powerful wind that tore mountains apart and shattered rocks, not in the earthquake, and not in the fire.

God was in the whisper.

So when I go back to beginnings, to the first whispers, I have to look past the loud things of life, the distractions, the noise – I have to listen for the gentle whispers.

Not always easy, is it?

The loud things are so loud, the distractions are so many, and the noise is everywhere.

But if I wait for it, listen with my whole heart, the gentle whispers never fade, and they out-last the others – always.

What are the whispers in my life?

Writing and encouraging have been there as long as I can remember.

When I rededicated my life to Christ at age 23 and travelled out to Rocky Mountain Bible College for a semester, the whispers were a question…

Will you give me your all Anna? I want to use you for the kingdom – will you let Me Anna?  Will you trust me?

Because He never forces us to do anything, does He?

It’s always our choice, and it’s a choice I have to continue to make in different seasons of life. A choice that comes easier some days than others. A choice that comes particularly hard when I don’t get a single thing about what He is up to in my life.

Then as I was getting to know a certain strapping young man named Joshua, the whispers were really girlish, childish, goofy, yet simple…

I’m going to marry Josh Sklar and have his babies.

Ya, told you, and we weren’t even dating yet!

Then when our second son was stillborn…

Focus on what you have, not what you don’t have. 

Caleb in the Bible – he told the people that the giants who currently lived in the promised land were no match for God, and surely the Israelites could move on into the land God had promised to them. He focused on what they had (God!!) and not what they didn’t have (mighty armies, huge warriors, etc.).

And going back to our dating days, Josh and I have always headed north. It’s like a magnet that draws us constantly. It’s only fitting that is now our home.   The whispers God has for us are so simple…

Reach the north.

And more and more He shows us how to do that.

If I can just remember these few gentle whispers in my life…

  1. Will you give Me your all Anna? 
  2. Marriage to Josh and mothering Josiah, Caleb, and Elijah are top of the priority list.
  3. Reach the north – however He leads us to do that.
  4. Writing and encouraging others are big on my personal to-do list.
  5. The only way to keep going is to focus on what I have, not what I don’t have.

It gets quite simple if I can just tune my head and my heart in to the whispers.

So many things can fall to the wayside and it’s OK.

Really.

This lifts the weight so much.

What are the whispers in your life?

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2 comments

  1. Yes… Amy Grant… I find myself playing her song on repeat once in a while… “All I ever have to be is what you made me”… you wrote out these lyrics for me when I was a little girl… I still have them tucked away in my old KJV Bible with the orange cover you made me… it has green flowery handles and pockets for me to stuff papers into… I treasure our heart-felt talks too and look forward to the next one!

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  2. I love the whispers God spoke to you, Anna. I remember some of these in our conversations on the front deck and long distance calls long ago. I cherish those times with all of you, sharing how God is speaking into your lives. I still repeat Amy Grant to myself when I get a little crazy 🙂 At this time in my life, I’m abundantly blessed to look back and be able to ‘connect the dots’ of the whispers and see so many of them present in my life now.

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