Looking at Simpler Times

How many of you read “Little Red Riding Hood” as a child? I know I did many times. The main character heads off through the woods to her grandmother’s house. I think most are aware of the rest of the story. Today, I want to focus on the journey to grandma’s house. I will harken us back as we look at simpler times in our lives. Follow me on the road to my grandmother’s house. 

Simpler Times

My Nanny, as I called her, lived in a big city. She called Belfast, Ireland, home. Instead of a house set in a row of trees, her place was in a row of houses. Nanny’s place was the third from the end of the row. Across the street, on the ground floor of another home, lay Davie’s Shop. We grandkids could run over to Davie’s to buy sweeties once a day and charge it on Nanny’s account. He also sold bread, eggs, and a few other essential items. 

Clop, clop, clop. Here comes the horse-drawn milk truck. The bottle clink and rattle as it draws near. The milkman made daily deliveries because most of the homes had no refrigerators. Nanny stored her milk in the shade of the dining room table. In summer, the drapes danced as a cooling breeze fluttered through the open windows. A coal and peat fire warmed our bones in the winter months as the earthy smell wafted around the room. 

Lack of Amenities

The power came from gas and not electricity. A gas meter hid behind the front door and required a regular feeding of coins to keep the lights burning. But, nothing heated the water. Bathing required boiling pots of water on the stove to fill a metal basin in the kitchen. We then proceeded to takes turns standing in the “tub” as mom poured water over us. We fought over who went first to get the cleanest and warmest water. 

The water closet (toilet) sat at the bottom of Nanny’s small enclosed backyard. Yes, that means outside the house. A nighttime ritual included preparing a pot to carry upstairs. The pot went under the bed to save going downstairs and outside in the middle of the night. The scent of Pine-Sol lulled us to sleep. And, another fight occurred over who carried down the vessel the next morning. 

No telephones in the home, but she did own a small TV. With only three channels to watch, we played make-believe or read books to entertain ourselves. We walked to the nearby stores or rode the big, red, double-decker buses into town for clothes shopping. Nanny bought her meat from the local butchers and the fruits and vegetables from the greengrocer. 

Looking Back

As I look back on those simpler times, it is hard for me to believe my Nanny lived in that house till the day she died a mere thirty years ago. My own home as a child had many more amenities than my Nanny’s. But the memories remain strong for me and still brings me a smile. The whole area was torn down in recent years, and new, more modern houses were built. These came with all the modern conveniences that we expect nowadays. I can’t imagine living in those old conditions now. It sometimes feels like a dream when I think back to those days. 

Jesus Makes it Uncomplicated

As I talked about in my blog last week, things do not bring us happiness or joy. Even though the place lacked so many modern comforts, we fondly remember these simpler times because of the love shared. We could overlook the discomforts of visiting Nanny for a few weeks because of the love she gave us and the joy she displayed when we saw her. Even back then, I viewed her way of living as rudimentary and challenging compared to my life. But, visiting her was worth the time and effort.

Christ wants everyone to feel so absorbed in His love that nothing else matters as much. Click To Tweet

God offers us a simpler way of life also. He does not want us to worry about the material things around us. He just wants us to bask in His love. And once we fill ourselves with His love, God wants us to share it with those around us. Christ wants everyone to feel so absorbed in His love that nothing else matters as much. Jesus Himself gave up so many worldly comforts to show us that love.

Bible Verses

Let’s look at some Bible verses to understand the importance of God’s love in our lives:

  • John 3:16; “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” 
  • 1 John 4:7-8; “7 Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. 8 Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.”
  • Romans 8:37-39; “37 No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. 38 For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, 39 neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
  • Isaiah 54:10; “Though the mountains be shaken and the hills be removed, yet my unfailing love for you will not be shaken nor my covenant of peace be removed,” says the Lord, who has compassion on you.”
  • Matthew 11:28-30; “28 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”
Lay all your complications and problems at the foot of the cross and let the love of Christ flow down over it and simplify life. Click To Tweet

Ways to a Simpler Times

God’s love is all-encompassing. When we walk in that love, He makes our burdens light. It is fun to look back at the simpler times in life. But, maybe that is because we like to complicate things in our world. Lay all your complications and problems at the foot of the cross and let the love of Christ flow down over it and simplify life. And as the song by Helen Howarth Lemmel reminds us; 

“Turn your eyes upon Jesus.

Look full in His wonderful face.

And the things of earth will grow strangely dim.

In the light of His glory and grace.”

Prayers

My Lord and God. Life seemed so easy in the past. Forgive me for the times I complicate everything. When my heart longs for yesterdays, remind me of Your love and how that will carry me through all things. Thank you for providing the best way forward. And thank you for Your Grace. In Christ’s Name. Amen.

Blessings,

Yvonne M. Morgan, author, blogger, and speaker.

Matthew 28:19 “Therefore, GO and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.”

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17 thoughts on “Looking at Simpler Times

  1. mimionlife – Writer of inspirational messages, sometimes laced with humor.
    mimionlife

    This is beautiful Yvonne. I love thinking about the simple things in life that bring joy. Precious memories from the past and new memories being created now. I am thankful for His love.

    1. Yvonne – I am a wife, a mom of two grown daughters, and one son who lives with Jesus. I am also a grandmother. I am passionate about missions and writing about the amazing stories of seeing Christ in action on my journey. God led me to set up a charity, which cares for orphans in Nepal and Myanmar. I hope my stories inspire you to reach out and be the hands and feet of Christ to someone.
      Yvonne Morgan

      And no matter how much things change, His love remains the same yesterday, today and forever. Thanks Melissa and God bless.

  2. Ava Pennington – Bible study teacher, speaker, and author of Daily Reflections on the Names of God: A Devotional.
    Ava Pennington

    Love, love, love this quote:
    “Christ wants everyone to feel so absorbed in His love that nothing else matters as much.”

    1. Yvonne – I am a wife, a mom of two grown daughters, and one son who lives with Jesus. I am also a grandmother. I am passionate about missions and writing about the amazing stories of seeing Christ in action on my journey. God led me to set up a charity, which cares for orphans in Nepal and Myanmar. I hope my stories inspire you to reach out and be the hands and feet of Christ to someone.
      Yvonne Morgan

      Thanks. If we fully understand the depth of His love we would never be in want again. God bless Ava.

  3. I love this! My daughter, age 12, has grown up w with cell phones/ipads/computers/modern amenities as the norm. Yet she often longs for the days depicted on Little ouse on the Prairie, when kids played outside, people cooked and built homes together, we didn’t have electricity, etc. I long for it too, some days. Your post reminded me of this.

    1. Yvonne – I am a wife, a mom of two grown daughters, and one son who lives with Jesus. I am also a grandmother. I am passionate about missions and writing about the amazing stories of seeing Christ in action on my journey. God led me to set up a charity, which cares for orphans in Nepal and Myanmar. I hope my stories inspire you to reach out and be the hands and feet of Christ to someone.
      Yvonne Morgan

      Modern technology can sometimes complicate our lives it seems. We are always “on” and “connected “. The old days seem quiet and slower paced. Thanks Jessica and God bless

  4. Melinda Viergever Inman – earth – Raised on the Oklahoma plains in a storytelling family, Melinda now spins tales from her writer's cave in the South. Her fiction illustrates our human story, wrestling with our brokenness and the storms that wreak havoc in our lives. Find her at http://melindainman.com.
    Melinda Viergever Inman

    Such beautiful reminders of a simpler time and the less convenient ways of living that our grandparents and great-grandparents experienced, and a beautiful reminder of intimacy with Jesus. Thank you for these picturesque recollections and these comforting reassurances.

    1. Yvonne – I am a wife, a mom of two grown daughters, and one son who lives with Jesus. I am also a grandmother. I am passionate about missions and writing about the amazing stories of seeing Christ in action on my journey. God led me to set up a charity, which cares for orphans in Nepal and Myanmar. I hope my stories inspire you to reach out and be the hands and feet of Christ to someone.
      Yvonne Morgan

      Thanks Melinda. In these crazy days sometimes I need to remember those simpler days. God bless.

  5. Such a neat story about your Nanny’s house and simpler life. My maternal grandparents and paternal grandmother often told similar stories, although they had more conveniences by the time my twin sister and I came along and moved back to my mother’s hometown in VA. Still, modern technology had not yet birthed and so my childhood memories are simpler with only tv’s and record players (I hear vinyl is making a comeback). So we played outside a lot and read more and didn’t carry devices. Thanks for sharing, Yvonne. Enjoyed this!

    1. Yvonne – I am a wife, a mom of two grown daughters, and one son who lives with Jesus. I am also a grandmother. I am passionate about missions and writing about the amazing stories of seeing Christ in action on my journey. God led me to set up a charity, which cares for orphans in Nepal and Myanmar. I hope my stories inspire you to reach out and be the hands and feet of Christ to someone.
      Yvonne Morgan

      Thanks Karen. I did hear vinyl is coming back. Some of the old things are better so technology is not always better. God bless.

  6. yourprotagonist – Not waiting for my vote to change the world. Local creativity might be significant. Help yourself to your world becoming a better place, and in participating, make yourself a better character in it.
    yourprotagonist

    Hi, Yvonne. Your beautifully written blog is a story and an application in one. It drew me in to how precious our ancient memories are. One of our authors, Lynn Byk, tells a similar but different story of living with her father-in-law and learning about the lives of Polish immigrants. (Mister B: Living with a 98-Year-Old Rocket Scientist). How we can anchor what matters in life by these stories! You bring that out with what really matters, and focusing on that so that all else fades. Thank you! Our publishing house has a publicity blog at https://booksforbondinghearts.com/

    1. Yvonne – I am a wife, a mom of two grown daughters, and one son who lives with Jesus. I am also a grandmother. I am passionate about missions and writing about the amazing stories of seeing Christ in action on my journey. God led me to set up a charity, which cares for orphans in Nepal and Myanmar. I hope my stories inspire you to reach out and be the hands and feet of Christ to someone.
      Yvonne Morgan

      Thank you so much for your kind words. It is very important to cherish such memories for the future generations. I realized it myself since my grandparents and parents are now gone. It was up to me to record the story. I will check out your blog too. Thanks and God bless.

  7. M. J. – El Salvador
    M. J.

    Your description really had me feeling like I was there in your Nanny’s house. I love the way you tied everything together, and shared “Turn your eye’s upon Jesus,” that was actually one of my Grandmother’s favorite songs!

    1. Yvonne – I am a wife, a mom of two grown daughters, and one son who lives with Jesus. I am also a grandmother. I am passionate about missions and writing about the amazing stories of seeing Christ in action on my journey. God led me to set up a charity, which cares for orphans in Nepal and Myanmar. I hope my stories inspire you to reach out and be the hands and feet of Christ to someone.
      Yvonne Morgan

      My parent’s both lived that song too. We get so distracted today and it is because we take our eyes off of Him. Thanks M.J. I appreciate your comments. God bless.

  8. Mary Rooney Armand – New Orleans – Mary Rooney Armand loves to write and teach about inspiring faith based stories. She focuses on helping others grow in their intimacy with Christ and thrive in their personal relationships. She has a Bible Study titled “Identity” available on Amazon. To learn more visit maryarmand.com.
    Mary

    What a great story and memory of your Nanny. The simple life can be so freeing in some ways and easier to connect to God. Thanks for sharing!

    1. Yvonne – I am a wife, a mom of two grown daughters, and one son who lives with Jesus. I am also a grandmother. I am passionate about missions and writing about the amazing stories of seeing Christ in action on my journey. God led me to set up a charity, which cares for orphans in Nepal and Myanmar. I hope my stories inspire you to reach out and be the hands and feet of Christ to someone.
      Yvonne Morgan

      Our stuff can really get in the way of our worship. Learning to live simple can make such a difference. Thanks Mary, I appreciate you visiting and commenting. God bless.

  9. Ava James – An indie author and lifestyle blogger. Words burst out at the most inappropriate times. Passion filled letters, impatiently exploding onto the page or screen when I'm consumed with something else. Besides life would be dull and boring if writing was straightforward. When away from her writing she works full time as a medico-legal professional. In her spare time she enjoys an adventure from the outdoors to dancing and anything sporty.
    Ava James

    Life is always simple when we don’t complicate it. I remember my grandma, she lived a very simple life. And all the things she treasured were dear to her. Sometimes God can speak clearer into our lives when He can get past the clutter

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