Simple Living Resources
Many Christians practice voluntary simplicity, or simple living, as a means of reducing their own impact on God’s creation, freeing up time to build relationships with God, family and community, and weaning themselves away from a culture that insists that affluence is the point of living.
Alternatives for Simple Living, a Christian non-profit, has about every book and resource you’d ever need to learn more about simple living at their website: www.simpleliving.org. Why not take some time browsing their online catalogue?
The following books are good resources to start thinking about our own North American lifestyle and its connection to the developing world. Choose one or both of these books for a small group study, or read one as a family and discuss it around the dinner table. As an added bonus, look for them at your local library!
As an added bonus, look for them at your local library!
If you’re more visually inclined, you might want to check out Affluenza, a program that debuted on public television a few years ago. This documentary looks at our North American culture of consumption, and the effect it has on our lives, our communities, and our planet. You can search your local library, or order the film from bullfrogfilms.com.
If you have 20 minutes and a good internet connection, you can watch the Story of Stuff, a well-produced, straight-forward, entertaining little animated film that also explores our culture of consumption, how it got that way, the effect it’s having on us, our earth, and the poor, and what we can do to make a change. This is a great primer for discussion with a small group.
Neither Affluenza nor Story of Stuff are from a specifically Christian perspective, but they are still excellent entry-points into thinking about how we might alter our lifestyles to better serve the Lord.
For a more scriptural take, check out Simply Enough from the folks at Alternatives for Simple Living.
This DVD is a personal dialogue between Tony Campolo and Shane Claiborne about the foundations of the Christian life and voluntary simplicity for older youth and young adults. Their discussion includes sessions on lifestyle, food, celebrations, money, justice, and possessions. A study guide is also included.
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