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March 26, 2013

Simple Gifts

Following on our meditation theme of simplicity for this week, I have been thinking a lot about the Shaker song "Simple Gifts" written in 1848 by Elder Joseph Brackett.

This song has always spoken to me, even as a child when I was living a simple life.  The little girl I was would sing this in church as loud as possible, yearning to dance in the pew.  To this day when I hear it I am filled with hope, joy, and peace.

Now that I am older, and living a slightly more complicated life I have found the words as moving and inspirational as the tune.  Jewel's Version above speaks to the older me. 
Tis the gift to be simple, tis a gift to be free, 'Tis the gift to come down where you ought to be, And when we find ourselves in the place just right, Twill be in the valley of love and delight.
When true simplicity is gained, To bow and to bend, we will not be ashamed, To turn, turn, will be our delight, Till by turning, turning we come round right                      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Simple_Gifts

To see life as a gift every day.  To find joy and peace in waking up with just what you need, because your needs are SIMPLE.  To be free from the "rat race" and mass consumerism we all to often find ourselves in.      

These days the line about coming "down where you ought to be" stands out.  It is a line of hope.  You may not be in the right spot now, but that place is there waiting for you.   

I am also moved by the second verse, and how opened and agreeable it is to compromise.  It is a good reminder that some times even if you are faced with a set back or a delay, just keep turning/adapting/moving and you'll be right again.       


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