Today I read this encouraging article by Michelle from She Looketh Well. If you are experiencing discontentment in any areas of your life today then I would urge you to read her article written over At the Well.
Michelle asks her readers to think about areas in their own lives which they are not content with, how God is revealing this and how do you turn these feelings around.
"Contentment, then, is the product of a heart resting in God. It is the soul's enjoyment of that peace which passeth all understanding. It is the outcome of my will being brought into subjection to the Divine will. It is the blessed assurance that God doeth all things well, and is, even now, making all things work together for my ultimate good. This experience has to be "learned" by "proving what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God" (Rom. 12:2). Contentment is possible only as we cultivate and maintain that attitude of accepting everything which enters our lives as coming from the Hand of Him who is too wise to err, and too loving to cause one of His children a needless tear." A.W. PINK
Upon reading this I think God is showing us that contentment needs to be learned and prayed for. I was dissatisfied with some things before I was a Christian and still today as a Christian. I did not automatically become deeply content with life. It is part of our sinful nature to want, envy, and covet. These elements of our nature do not just disappear overnight. To be content is a state of mind we strive towards and actively endeavour to achieve.
There are many things which leave me feeling less than content in my life. I always think I could do with a larger house, maybe I should be working outwith my home for extra money, I compare myself to other "better" Christians, I need to be a better, more Christian mum and so on! I am sure we all share many of these feelings of discontent!
I wonder sometimes if Satan stirs up these feelings inside of us? Feelings of envy and bitterness can lead to divisions in Church. Materialistic wants can lead to debt problems and this can then lead on to marital trouble.
So how can we learn to be content with what we have?
God's word directs us and we should read this and pray for his enlightenment. I actively look for the blessings in my life to distract myself from what I don't have. I have two healthy, beautiful children (although one is a little sick today!). I have my health. I have a perfectly adequate home with room for us all. I think we get way too caught up on the size of our homes. When you look to under developed countries and the conditions many people have to live in then I think I should be ashamed of myself when I am not happy with the size of my kitchen or how many bedrooms I have. At least I have a bed to sleep in and a roof over my head. So many people don't.
I sacrificed working and having extra money to stay at home and raise my children and keep my home. My children are never without clothing, footwear or food despite money being very tight some weeks! God always provides! It is not always easy to be content as a stay at home mum. Often I think I could be working and earning some money to contribute to the bills however, the effects this would have on my family would just not be worth it. They are used to having me at home and this is the way God wants my life to be just now. I am learning to be content with what God wants for my family at this moment in life.
So what areas of your life are you not content with? How do you work on this?
Feel free to link up with us At the Well.