"I rejoiced in the Lord greatly that once again you had renewed your care for me. You were, in fact, concerned about me but lacked the opportunity to show it. I don't say this out of need, for I have learned to be content in whatever circumstance I am. I know both how to have a little, and I know how to have a lot. In any and all circumstances I have learned the secret of being content--whether well fed or hungry, whether in abundance or in need. I am able go do all things through Him who strengthens me" (Philippians 4:10-13, HCSB).
Contentment: a state of happiness and satisfaction
Have I learned to be content, truly? Or am I always waiting for the next best thing to come along? Am I enjoying today, or am I always looking toward tomorrow?
Sometimes, life is clearer at 3AM. When the world is dark, and only a light from the hallway shines into my son's room, my heart is able to breathe. I sit in the rocking chair, holding my little one close, feeding him and helping him fall back asleep. In those moments, the stresses of the day pass away. My heart opens, and I often find myself praying for the dear ones in my life, near and far away.
My days are so crazy, so filled, often so stressful. Nighttime finds a release, a relaxation, a setting of life straight. A tucking of crazy loose sheet corners back into place. A reminder of all the beautiful moments of this life.
Sometimes my life feels a bit lonely. It's so filled to the brim with housework and babies and counting down to supper time when my husband walks through the door.
Sometimes the only adult I speak to is him, when we sit on the couch, me, keeping my feet warm under his legs, him dozing as we watch the tv or read some books.
We're always dreaming, talking about the places we'll go, things we'll see, the house we'll build someday.
Picking up our lives every couple of years doesn't lend itself to contentment. This transient military life doesn't lend itself to feeling settled.
So how do I combat that? How do I find contentment in the midst of an ever-changing life, in an ever-changing world?
Perhaps, it has less to do with where my feet may travel, and more to do with my heart.
As I rock my baby, late at night, my heart settles. It searches for contentment. It asks God to shower this, and every day with such a feeling.
Lord, help me to be content, no matter the circumstance. Help me to rest in the assurance that I am exactly where you want me to be. Give me patience and grace in the hardest of moments, when I'm at my whits end, when I don't know where to turn. When the house is a mess, the babies are screaming, and the day feels like it will never end. Remind me that I am yours and that you are weaving an amazing plan through my life. Help me to be content in this military life that doesn't, on it's own, lend itself to contentment.