Contentment. I’d venture to say that we all desire to live a life of contentment. But it’s easier said than done sometimes isn’t it?
If I asked you what you would change about the season of life that you’re in right now, what would you say? What immediately popped into your mind just now? I bet something did.
We’re all in different seasons, some more difficult than others, but I’m willing to bet that we’d all gladly change a thing or two . . . or ten.
Often we envision ourselves being perfectly content – once a particular season of life is over. “When such and such happens, when this or that situation is over, once I’m finally through this hard season, when I get that one thing . . . then I’ll be content.”
Maybe you’re in the season of little children, and precious as they are, you wish you could get more sleep, have a real conversation with your husband, and actually remember what you walked into the kitchen for.
Maybe you’re in a season of physical trials – and you wish so badly that you or a loved one could be back to normal again. You see pictures of your friend’s happy, healthy family on Facebook and you can only long for your life to be that way again.
Maybe it’s a season of financial hardship that you’re traveling through. You watch people’s “hauls” on YouTube and Instagram and think if only. Instead of rejoicing in their good fortune and moving on, you struggle to push back rising feelings of envy.
Perhaps you find yourself in an insanely busy season of life and feel like you’re constantly chasing your tail and burning the candle at both ends to keep up with everything. Conversely, maybe you’re in a super slow season, and you long for something EXCITING to happen.
We’re all in different seasons, and we all have things we’d change if we could; then we’d finally be content, or at least that’s what we tell ourselves.
But here’s a thought – if we could see the big picture, the whole entire tapestry instead of our current, painfully limited view – would we change anything?
If God is good, wise, and all-powerful (and He is), then He has placed us in our particular seasons of life, in our unique circumstances, for our good.
And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose. For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son . . . ” (Romans 8:28-29)
Contentment doesn’t mean putting on a big smile and saying that everything is wonderful when it isn’t. It’s absolutely okay to admit that the season you are in right now is HARD. Knowing that God is working all things for our good doesn’t necessarily make anything easier.
But, contentment is being willing to wait, even when we long for a change in circumstances that are totally out of our control.
Contentment is trusting God through it all and in spite of it all.
Contentment is being grateful, even in the midst of hard circumstances. Because if nothing else, we have God.
Whom have I in heaven but You?
And there is none upon earth that I desire besides You.
My flesh and my heart fail;
But God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever. (Psalm 73:25-26)
I can moan and groan about what I don’t have right now or about what I can’t change about my current season of life, or I can choose to trust that my God has an amazing plan for me right here in the middle of it all. And when I trust in His plan, I can truly be content.
PS – Awhile back I shared one of my favorite poems, Wait by Russell Kelfer. It’s a beautiful reminder of how God wants to use our circumstances to do a work in us. Read it here.