My family and I waited for our food during a rare lunch date in the middle of the week. Feelings of failure overcame me. Like being in battle, one blow after another hit me this past week. Parenting blows. Each one magnified, perhaps, by the reality that I’m in a state of upheaval as my family prepares to move out the house we’ve been in for over a decade.
My husband said, “You need God’s Word.”
My reply, “I also need to look at reality.”
My son, coming into the booth at the end of the conversation reminded me, “God’s Word IS reality.”
I am experiencing a weak time in my life. A time when the best thing to learn about contentment should be that when I’m weak, He is strong.
“For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.” -2 Corinthians 12:10
It is true, there are so many ways that we can practice contentment. I’ve found an amazing list of practices in Thomas Watson’s book that I mentioned in my last post, The Practice of Divine Contentment. You can click here and read about them in the chapter found in the table of contents titled: A Christian Directory, or rules about contentment.
I think it is most important to recognize, though, that even if I were to reach a great level of contentment, it’s Jesus that works in me powerfully to live a contented Christian life.
I need the practice of cooperating with him in the ways I’ve mentioned throughout this series and in the ways mentioned in Thomas Watson’s book. More importantly, though, I need to yield to HIM and for HIM to work powerfully in me.
“Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, so now, not only as in my presence but much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling, 13 for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure.” -Phillippians 2:12-13
I had planned on sharing a list of the practices mentioned in Thomas Watson’s book. It is a good list. Actually, it’s a fantastic list! I plan on contemplating it as I go forward. I may even share it here in the future. Today, I feel lead to simply share this one thing. Jesus. Jesus IS our contentment. The first thing I want to do is rest in Him. A list of practices are good and right to do, but I must first and foremost yield to Jesus.
The imagery of a child from this verse seems to help me in this yielding:
“O Lord, my heart is not lifted up;
my eyes are not raised too high;
I do not occupy myself with things
too great and too marvelous for me.
But I have calmed and quieted my soul,
like a weaned child with its mother;
like a weaned child is my soul within me.
O Israel, hope in the Lord from this time forth and forevermore.” -Psalm 131:1-3
I think this is the perfect way to end this series on contentment. Jesus has lived the perfect contented life. On the cross, all of my sin and sinful failures were given to Him and all of His perfect righteousness was given to me. He died and rose again. He He has covered us in His beautiful robe of righteousness. He not only covers us with His righteousness, He practically and effectively helps us as we live our lives. He did this in order to restore us for a purpose. That purpose is for us to follow Him, love Him, and love others.
In all of our Christian life practices, let us have our first and foremost practice be yielding to Him. Let’s not strive in our own strength to be content, but calm and quiet our souls as we rest on Him.
I will be blogging less over the next few months as I move and also attempt to make progress on therapeutic stretch videos. I don’t really know what that will look like, but I do plan to be back to my regular weekly blogging routine at the first of the year along with a new service of providing a monthly stretch video.
Will you pray for me as I attempt to do this as well as move to a new home? My request for prayer is to be able to go forward trusting in God’s strength, even as I feel weak.
Blessings as you rest in Him and as you enjoy the warmth of Christ, home, and holidays as the days grow colder!