Monday, September 12, 2011

Adderall vs. Simplicity

Photo credit: taysm from morguefile.com

I was struck by a recent blog post by Her.meneutics, drawing attention to the growing issue of adderall and ritalin abuse on Christian college campuses. There are numerous pressures facing many college students these days to achieve academic success, enhance their resumes before entering a challenging job market, build relationships, and, for Christians, get involved in ministry and service. It's no wonder that many students are handling this pressure by turning to drugs prescribed for ADHD to pull all-nighters and increase their energy levels...all so they can live up to expectations and accomplish more.

What I really loved about this blog post, though, was how Marlena tied the issue at Christian Colleges to a larger issue: a lack of simplicity. And this issue is not relegated to the student demographic. We all experience the pressure to accomplish, fill our schedules, stay busy, and "do more" for God, our families, and others. I know I have this tendency, not only because of the pressures I allow on myself from society and our culture, but also because of my task-oriented personality.

What are we missing? We are forgetting the spiritual discipline of simplicity. We are forgetting that God instructed us to honor the sabbath for a reason. Rest is important, and when we live a simple life, we are better equipped to respond in obedience to the times when God calls us to serve.

I especially loved this quote that Marlena included from Lauren Winner:

"...getting eight hours of sleep may very well be the most holy thing we do as followers of Jesus. It’ll help keep us from making ourselves and everyone around us miserable. Busyness, hurry, and over-commitment are not badges of honor. On the contrary, they are indicative of a sick soul."

I hope you are challenged by this blog post as much as I was to re-consider simplicity today, and how God might be calling you to simplify your life to better honor and serve Him.