How satisfied are you today? Were you comfortable in your summer wardrobe? Did you feel fine lounging at the pool or walking at the park in the summer sun? Are you experiencing the abundant life that God promises us? Depending on your answers, you could either feel very content or very stressed.
I am discovering how to live balanced between accepting my current conditions and desiring improvement. Thin Within calls this “present day living.” Ah, living in the present. That’s where I want to be. Too often I find myself rehearsing the past or longing for the future.
The Bible teaches us “not to worry about tomorrow for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of it’s own.” (Matthew 6:34) I like that.
I am also in the middle of a new book about contentment and learning how to keep evil things outside my door rather than allowing it to take hold of me and cause struggle. Sounds like boundaries, doesn’t it? I’m also learning more about discouragement and how to really trust God in all circumstances.
Whenever rebellion against God rises in me, my thoughts begin to move away from contentment. So, what fears can distract us in our heart of hearts? What discourages us and tempts us to rebel against God? Will we be like Jacob, who joined his mother in lying to Isaac; not content to wait on God’s time and God’s ways to receive the blessing? (Genesis 27)
Think back to times in your life when you’ve experienced true peace and contentment, even sometimes in the face of a trial or storm. Do you, like me, hunger for more of that in your life? Are you, like me, getting tired of melancholy that can so easily settle in our hearts? Do you, like me, long for grace to spread her wings and lift you above it all? How can we learn to be satisfied with God’s judgment regarding timing and trials and deliverance? Can we really tame our emotions and thoughts and will?
David accepted God’s perfect will, yet he says in Psalm 42; “Oh my soul, why are you disquieted? Why are you cast down within me? Hope thou in God, for I shall yet praise Him for the help of his countenance.”
So we learn to wrestle ourselves. True contentment (to me) is an inward quiet grace and belief that all is satisfied. It comes from within, not from anything outward, and certainly not food or body size.
Within I am content, but without I am struggling. I am allowing my inward contentment to carry me and sustain me, despite waiting on outward circumstances to change or improve.
This requires tremendous balance and it’s my daily goal to desire freedom from discontentment and worry and complaining. This quietness can only be accomplished through a gracious heart. It’s not conscience, not reason or determination. It’s simply spiritual contentment by receiving God’s marvelous grace.
I am not longer content to commit sin (numbing with food I don’t need) when I’m afflicted. I am, however, more content today with affliction and waiting on God’s grace to bring more freedom. Father knows best, I do not. I have spent long enough thinking I knew better than the Almighty. I have settled this truth.
I made some new Truth Cards to establish a new boundary. It’s a lifeline!
So how about you? How do you answer those questions at the beginning of the article? What do you need in order to be more content with God? Are you like me?