So, enough about food and stuff…..

 

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Let’s talk contentment. 

I don’t know about you, but when I hear the word “contentment”, it stops me in my frazzled, scattered, insecure tracks. It’s the magic word that calms my spirit and taps me on the shoulder, reminding me to keep my priorities in check. 

“But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.”~2 Corinthians 12:9 

Wouldn’t it be so awesome if we all walked around delighted, wearing smiles, truly grasping that “His grace is sufficient?!”

Let me yell it out-it’s sufficient Ladies! It truly is! He wouldn’t have said it if He didn’t mean it.

 So, the moment we feel guilty for not being able to afford the Christmas for our children that the neighbors can this year, or if we are burdened beyond what we ever dreamed of, or if we are in a mental trap believing  everyone else has it better. Remember, God knew we’d all go through the same thought processes. But, He reminds us that His grace is sufficient. He sees the big picture, we simply don’t. 

Another thing, everyone who is living and breathing is  hurting on one level or the other. Life isn’t easy for anyone. I know, I know…you’ve got this friend who glamorously showboats her perfect life on FB (I could be her!). It makes you almost physical hurt to compare your life to hers. Well, let me tell ya, she’s got issues….I’ve got issues. It’s promised. So, when we’ve got issues…that’s where the “Christ’s power resting on me” comes into play. Flaunt that blanket of comfort like it’s going out of style. Wear it- own it- don’t you let those worldly things get you down.

Not that I speak from want; for I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am. I know how to get along with humble means, and I also know how to live in prosperity; in any and every circumstance I have learned the secret of being filled and going hungry, both of having abundance and suffering need. ~Philippians 4:11-12

 The one thing that always stays the same? Change. So, if you are in a time of prosperity- live it up! There will be a time of change. If you are in a time of anguish, take heart- this too will pass. Are you ill? God will heal you here or there. Is there a relationship that is troubling you? Time will pass, as will your burden. But whatever the case may be, pray for the Lord to help you to be content.

Have you ever heard of Charles Dickens’ famous quote from A Tale of Two Cities?

“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us.”

I can definitely remember some best of times, worst of times concoctions in my own life. One memory that comes to mind was the year we had our third baby and my husband was unemployed. Ohhh, what a recipe.  That baby was the best, happiest, most joyful little thing…a true blessing! But, what in the world? We had no income!? Oh, and not to mention I came down with the infamous Swine Flu. Let me tell you, that was fun….nursing with a mask over my face and doubled over in pain from a broken rib brought on from coughing. All along, I got the chance to be with this sweet precious newborn baby who loved the very sight of me. I remember how she’d kick, flail her arms and did the wide open Gerber baby smile every time she saw me. It was the best of times, it was the worst of times. I learned to be content and ride the wave. 

If you are struggling in this area, my suggestion is this (and I’ve done this often). Write down your needs, blessings and prayer requests. Do this every day. We cannot change everything going on around us, but we can alter our thinking. If we lay it out in front of us, we see with our own eyes how God is working. This helps us to give God glory over our lives. At times we need to just shut out our own internal dialogue that keeps us from being content and battle it out with some good old contentment, no matter what is going on. No matter what is going on.

I’ll say it again….no matter what is going on.

 

Love to you, Janelle

 
 

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Comments

  1. Beautiful.
    Thank you so much… and MERRY Christmas!!! :)

  2. Monica Green says:

    Janelle
    This post was so nice to hear
    I hope you and your family have a nice Christmas!
    Monica

  3. I so needed this. Your story could be mine (minus the swine flu). Just had our third blessing and my husband is unemployed. Definitely the best and worst of times. Keep reminding myself of how much worse it could be.

  4. Charlotte Moore says:

    MERRY CHRISTmas and a HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!

  5. Beautifully written and how applicable to life that paragraph from Dickens is! It was funny though, as I read the part about your daughter I glanced to the side of the page to see what she looks like now. Haha, still the same by the look of it! What a precious smile! I think the Devil would love to ruin the joy of Christmas with that spirit of discontent. In our hardest times I have fought this by finding someone without a family to share Christmas with and inviting them to our house. It’s such fun for me, almost like rent-a-family! (I don’t have one of my own). We have been blessed to enjoy the company of an ex-muslim (he had never experienced Christmas before, it was like having a kid around!) and last year we were joined by a brazilian man whose family were in another country (visa troubles) and a single father and his daughter. I was blessed more than them because it gave me someone to cook for and love on. Tomorrow we are having two young men without family join us. Even though this year has been the hardest of my life, God still blesses!

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