Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Simplify: Be Content in Circumstances

What is Contentment?

Here's the definition according to Webster's


1) Mentally or emotionally satisfied with things as they are

2) Assenting to or willing to accept circumstances, a proposed course of action, etc.

I have to be honest here, I almost titled this post as Simple Mom Confessions. The reason I am blogging on contentment is because I really needed to practice it yesterday and I wasn't...at all!! As I continue to pray for God's guidance and purpose for this blog, as I am praying for guidance in all areas of my life right now, these thoughts, concepts, and words kept coming to mind.

Live Contently, Simply, & Fully

After the rough day I had yesterday (they were mostly self inflicted rough spots) I really wanted to seek God first this morning. Contentment is what He put on my heart and truly what I believe He wants me to share with you today.

I am finding the key to a simple life is fine tuning the art of contentment. If I seek contentment in all areas of my life then I stop spending money on things I want and don't really need, and I get off the hamster wheel of never having enough time in the day to accomplish all I want to and I learn to see my trials as a tool to help me be even more content.

I had to stop and access what areas of my life I needed to apply contentment. So I decided that over the course of the next few days I will share what I'm finding and what the Lord is showing me. The first area I know I need to practice contentment in is:

Stress (Circumstances)

I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or want. Phillipians 4:11-12

Consider it pure joy...whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. James 1:2

Now if Paul, who was imprisoned when he wrote this, can find contentment in all things then that's what I should strive for with God's help. This is where I struggle. I find it easier (this is me personally)to be content with money/material things and my time than I do in this area.

It's those little moments of the lost shoe when you're running late, the twentieth time of putting my toddler in time out, or the meal plans gone bad (see homemade tortilla photo). In those moments whatever is happening right then and there seems magnified and I even justify my exploding temper and outburst of frustration.

The Lord is slowly revealing to me that when I allow my anger to get the best of me I'm saying that I don't deserve this, this is unfair,etc. However, God is opening my eyes to if I believe His promises like Joshua 1:5, 1 Corinthians 10:13& Romans 8:28 then these trials, no matter how big or small, are for my betterment.

My betterment? I certainly wasn't thinking that after 5 months of moving from Indiana (where I call home, grew up there, family is there) to Florida, then getting settled in there and getting used to the beach life to be told "Guess what Honey? I've been offered a job in Kansas!" was for my betterment. But after being here for 3 weeks I can honestly say that I am better for it.

My faith has grown beyond anything I thought possible. My appreciation for my husband and my family as a whole is deeper. My prayers in other areas have been answered as a result to the move. The bottom line here is that I am on the road to contentment (which ultimately leads to simplifying) through circumstances I never would have asked to happen if it were up to me!

C.S. Lewis said "If you think of this world as a place intended simply for our happiness, you find it quite intolerable: think this world as a place of training and correction and it's not so bad."

*Disclaimer: Please read this post with discretion. I am in no way suggesting you stay in a volatile situation where yourself or someone else is in harm's way. The trials I am speaking of here are the everyday, minor annoyances I allow to be much bigger than they should. If you are struggling with a more serious trial that is ongoing, harmful or desturctive, please pray and seek the help and advice of a pastor, counselor, family member, etc.


Angie said...

Hello, I came over from Beth at I'm Heading Toward My Destiny's blog - nice to meet you. I can see that you have a lot of wisdom to share - one vital lesson learned, God is in control and He knows best! Look forward to reading your blog. Stop by & visit mine if you have time... (godcreatedlaughter.blogspot.com)

April said...

Hi there! I'm visiting from Beth's blog and I'm so glad I did! Wow...I just love your powerful lesson...thank you for sharing! I am now a follower! :)

Jill said...

Returning the favour and following you back! Thanks for visiting my blog!

Jill @ Creating my way to Success

Simple Midwest Mom said...

Thank you Angie & April but it's all from the Lord, not my own!