Christian Minimalism

Giving Attention

Note: This is a guest post written by Matt Kendziera.

When Jesus Walked

After beginning his ministry with the Sermon on the Mount in Matthew 5, “Blessed are the poor in spirit…” Jesus walked down the mountain and didn’t stop walking for the better part of two chapters. He strolled from place to place responding to the needs that would show up in front of him.

It started with a man suffering from leprosy, then a centurion, Peter’s mother-in-law, people possessed by demons. He took a quick boat ride, calming a storm along the way, met two more demon possessed men, rode the boat back and continued his walk. He healed a paralyzed man, had dinner with a tax collector named Matthew, healed Jairus’ daughter, a woman with a bleeding issue, and finally someone who was blind and mute. 

The vast majority of Jesus ministry was simply walking around and meeting the needs of those that came to him.

Time Starvation

A by-product of consumerism and materialism is time starvation. We spend a great deal of time paying for and taking care of the things we own.

The average American married couple only spends 45 quality minutes together every day. That’s just 3% of our lives. When I said, “I do” to my incredible wife, I intended that to mean I was giving her more than just 3% of my life!

A by-product of time starvation is missing out on what God has for us. Living like Jesus requires a great deal of time– time to walk around and meet the needs of those we encounter.

Since most of us do not have this time we end up settling for a cheap version of faith that involves checking off spiritual boxes:

Go to church…check.

Say a prayer…check.

Read the Bible…check.

As Jesus came out of the temple and was going away, his disciples came to point out to him the buildings of the temple. Then he asked them, “You see all these, do you not? Truly I tell you, not one stone will be left here upon another; all will be thrown down.

Matthew 24:1-2

Here we see Jesus’ disciples try to draw his attention to the temple buildings– and Jesus dismisses them and keeps on walking and doing ministry.

Our faith is not about our church buildings in the same way that our life is not about the things we possess. A minimalist approach is the only option if we desire to take an approach to life like Jesus did!

Giving Attention

The first act of love is always the giving of attention.

Dallas Willard

Healing, hope, faith, and restoration almost always begin with a conversation, a chance meeting, and the giving of our attention. The beautiful work of the kingdom of God happens when we give our attention to others. As a minimalist, I want to be available for these conversations and I want to have the time to give my attention to those around me!

Make the time to make a difference, and slow down to give others attention. Friends, you can search the entire Bible and not find a single reference to Jesus running.

Matt Kendziera is a speaker and podcaster. His podcast, Jesus Never Ran, focuses on slowing down our lives so that we can fully experience all that life and faith has to offer! You can find it wherever great podcasts are found or at www.jesusneverran.com. Matt along with his wife Suzie are the founders and directors of In It Together, an organization that encourages couples through laughter, music, fun and practical advice. Find them at www.beinit.org.

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About 
Becca Ehrlich, AKA The Christian Minimalist, is striving to be a Christian minimalist in a consumer society. She currently lives in Philadelphia, PA with her husband Will. You can read more about her story and how her blog came to exist by clicking the website link above.

1 Comment

  1. Leo

    May 9, 2020 - 2:16 pm
    Reply

    Thank-you. Your work touched me when I needed this message. I want to respond as a way of offering encouragement. And I’m sure that there are many others being helped by your work but remain silent as I usually do. Thanks again

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