Contentment



But I rejoiced in the Lord greatly that now at last your care for me has flourished again; though you surely did care, but you lacked opportunity. Not that I speak in regard to need, for I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content: I know how to be abased, and I know how to abound. Everywhere and in all things I have learned both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.
-Philippians 4:10-13


Contentment.
Sometimes it is a difficult concept to grasp.

In the verses above, Paul is writing to fellow believers in Philippi who hadn't been able to show their support for him. He knew they were concerned, but that they just didn't have an opportunity to show it. Even though their support would have been helpful to Paul, he had learned to be content no matter the circumstances.

How?
Verse 13 is key: I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.

Often times this verse is quoted separately from the Scriptures before it, and we quote it in reference to the really, big, huge, hard, demanding things in life, those things we KNOW we Jesus for: things that scare us, things we don't have answers for, things we just can't see a way out of. A well-meaning brother or sister in the faith will encourage us and remind us that we can do it because of Christ, and He will strengthen us.


This is true. No doubt about it, as our God is an awesome, amazing, wonder-working God.

But what about in those areas I like to call the small places?

As wives and mothers, we face a billion small, mundane places every day and it is easy to become dissatisfied: vacuuming, diaper changes, dish washing, picking up toys, reading lessons, wiping noses, cooking meals, doing laundry, a listening ear to a husband--day in and day out, multiple times a day.

If we're not careful, the enemy sneaks in to whisper lies to us, that we should seek more, anything else outside of our homes, that this work is nothing but drudgery, that there is freedom out there, that you need to escape. . .

I challenge you to remember that God's grace, His strength, is available in the seemingly mundane, daily to-do's. It is available in all those small places. It's available right there where other's can't fathom the reason you'd be willing to stay at home, working to raise a family, serving and loving a husband.

Remember, what we do each day as homemakers, wives, mothers and homeschoolers is worthy work. It is blessed work. It is work with an eternal purpose. The routine tasks are just a small portion of it on eternity's scale. Keep that in mind. Know that we can be content, right where we are--in the midst of overflowing sinks and never-ending laundry piles. God is there, too. He is right there in the middle of dinners, toys, ironing and mopping floors. He is right there and He is your way to contentment.

Like Paul, we must learn how to be and what to be depending on the needs of our situations. We must learn to be grateful for the assignment of being a wife and for motherhood. It is a precious calling that many desire to embrace, but may never know. Welcome the mundane, work through it with contentment. God has called you and He is your strength.


**Originally written here for Our Homeschool Forum.**

4 comments:

  1. Thanks for the encouragement! My word for next year is joy. The latter part of this year I started to become hazy in sight, and really kind of stinky in behavior. I realized it was because I allowed myself to become distracted. When I am distracted, I am not content. I know that you can't be halfway content. It's either you are or you are not. I am thankful that the word joy has been placed on my heart. Daily, I have made it a point to find joy in the ordinary.

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    1. You are welcome, as I am encouraging myself, too! I'm realizing daily contentment is a choice I have to make. Finding the joy in each situations is a great way to do that. Thanks for sharing your word for the year. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!!!!!!

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    2. I think you're right that we need to find the joy or beauty in each situation. . and each small thing and blessing. All those little things pile up to a larger feeling of contentment. Maybe that means I'm thankful for indoor plumbing and a washing machine as I swish out a messy diaper in the toilet. . . whatever. But finding the good in the bad does help, too.

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    3. I agree, Jody. I think thwt as I sweep the crumbs from my floor that I'm thankful becausethatmeans my family was fed. Contentment takes some work and creativity, but it can be achieved.

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