By Beverly Graham Stickle
Reviewed by Claire Eva, Assistant Director, General Conference Stewardship Ministries
In her book, Slow Down and Simplify, Beverly Graham Stickle begins by saying, ?I think Jesus was thinking of people who need to slow down or simplify their lives when He mentioned people being ?choked with cares and riches and pleasures of this life’ (Lk 8:14 KJV). He knew most of us could benefit from making our lives less complicated? (Slow Down and Simplify, p 12 ). And thus she begins a journey to help her readers in the challenge to simplify life.
The tips in her book are based on interviews the author conducted involving over 200 ?experts? who were just regular people struggling for control in their very busy schedules. Stickle points out that making life easier means different things to different people. The plan you choose needs to fit you.
Chapters deal with topics like, setting limits on others’ expectations; controlling paper in your life; what to do with stuff—control clutter; easier homemaking, using technology wisely and many more.
Some tips include: 1) Don’t answer the phone. Instead, use your answering machine as a private secretary. 2) Make the most of your personal computer. Stay in touch with treasured friends through e-mail; use software to balance your checkbook. 3) Learn to say No and prioritize your activities, leaving important chunks of time for church and family.
There are 38 concise chapters consisting of a few pages each. The book is full of ideas. Because of the nature of her research, the book’s strength—loads and loads of tips—is also its weakness. Ideas are often at opposite poles and that is understandable because the work is based on interviews. But if you keep the basis of the book in mind, you’re bound to find lots of ideas to help in your journey to gain more perspective, ?rediscover God’s promise of peace,? and find time for the things in life that really matter!