Tuesday, January 12, 2010

A Sign?

Really quick... Thank all of you for your kind words in my last post. It really meant a lot to me that you took the time to share your experiences and opinions. I value each of them and have shared them with my husband! A decision has not been made but I am beginning to lean one way a little more. I am continuing to pray that God will show me His will for my life and give me peace with my decision and when a decision is made, don't worry, I will share it with you!

Is it a sign that this landed in my Inbox today? I think not!! God speaks to us in various ways and this TRULY spoke to me in the midst of my uncertainty and struggle to make a decision about being a SAHM. I have posted once before about Proverbs 31 Ministries and highly recommend signing up for their Daily Devotions. I hope this speaks to you and you feel as blessed by reading this as I do today! Have a great Tuesday!

The Secret of Contentment
By: Micca Monda Campbell

"…for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances" Philippians 4:11b (NIV)

Have you ever noticed how overextending yourself tends to bring unwanted pressure into your life? I think we tend to busy ourselves in order to gain more, find acceptance among peers, land a better position, and gain riches of all kinds. Perhaps we live under the illusion that having such riches is what makes a person complete, content, and deliriously happy. Yet, when we discover that's not the case, we're left feeling empty and discontent.

Contentment and security are not found in career titles or in the kind of car we own. The logo on our car only tells others what kind of car we drive — not who we are. True satisfaction, in its purest form, is found in the wealth of who God is and the riches He graciously lavishes upon us.
Recently God's been showing me that when I constantly want more than He has given me, it reflects a heart that is discontent. What I'm saying to God is, "I'm not satisfied with what You have provided for me. I want more." In wanting more, I place undo pressure on myself in an attempt to get what God hasn't provided. Naturally, anxiety is the result when I focus on things other than God and His will for my life.

The pressure to have more and do more can lead us down paths we never intended. In our attempt to fill the vacuum of our empty souls, we discover that external luxury is only a cheap substitution for spiritual wholeness. As our key verse points out, Paul knew the secret of finding contentment. "…for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances."

Take note that Paul wrote these words in a high stress situation as he sat in jail awaiting a verdict for a crime he didn't commit. I don't know if I could find contentment if I were in his sandals. I would probably strum my wooden cage with a rock singing pitifully, "Nobody knows the trouble I've seen. Nobody knows my sorrow." Finding contentment doesn't mean we have to like our current situation, but it may require an appreciation for it. Let me explain.

Paul learned that the fruit of contentment is developed when we are thankful for what God has provided whether we like it or not. That's because peace isn't the absence of pressure. It's the presence of God and our attitude toward His provision in the midst of our stress. By expressing gratitude, Paul experienced richness of being, not having.

I realize you may be in a hard place right now and you're longing for freedom. Maybe you're in a job that feels like a dead end; perhaps you have two of them! It may be that you live in a space too small for your family and you hate it. You're not where you planned or hoped to be and you certainly don't like it.

The truth is, we don't have to like where we are or what we have, but if we will choose to thank God for His provisions regardless of our feelings toward them, we'll experience the same contentment Paul encountered.

We must understand that being thankful doesn't mean that God will eventually remove us from our situation. He may; He may not. Rather, being appreciative sets us free from the desire to have and lets us rest in the riches of contentment. And when we reach a place of contentment, we don't need earthly riches galore. God becomes our greatest treasure. In Him, we have everything we need.

Dear Lord, things could always be worse. I'm grateful for what You've provided for me. Fill me with Your peace so that I may be truly content in Your blessings. In Jesus' Name, Amen.

16 comments:

short southern momma said...

Good stuff girl! I get those and just love them! Thinking and praying for you momma! XOXO

Blissfully Enamored said...

how perfect that this was in your box today!! praying for you!! i just added myself to the daily devotions mailing list...i am really excited! :)

e.n.h. said...

So thankful you posted that. It totally spoke to me and the situations I'm going through too. I just signed up for the devotions and hope they touch me as they have you!

Minnesota Girl said...

What a perfect message =)

Stay strong and keep us posted on what you decide!

Have a good rest of the week!

Taylor @ Jimmy Choos and a Baby Too said...

How perfect!

A Southern Accent said...

Just beautiful. Hit me right where I needed it! ;-)

Patience said...

Perfect!

Jesslee said...

wow! those pics of little Addison were super-cute! I totally missed your post, so hope you don't mind if i add my 2 cents here...

I would take the time (quiet, alone -just you and your thoughts) to think about the realities of working or staying home. Not the fantasy life we want to have but the real, everyday type of reality you will have. Do you love your job, your work, the people, the socialization, the check? Do you love having that extra income to spend on -the extra's? Don't let it come down to asking yourself what is more important my job (and money) or my daughter? We know you love your daughter and she is the most important thing! But will you truly be happy if you give up your job and the extra income to stay home with your daughter?

Is it possible for you to stay with your current job but have a more flexible schedule?
Is there anything you could or would want to do that would provide an income from working at home?
Have you heard of Zumba? It is a dance/aeobics, you can get information from their website. I know you like staying fit and this is just a suggestion (I don't work for them or anything) but anyone can become an instructor by taking their course and you could offer classes a few nights a week at the gym of one of your public schools. As an example: Your class could cost as little as $5 per person and if you had 25 ppl, you'd make $125 a night for an hours work and you could have as many nights or weekend mornings as you wanted. Anyways... that is just an example.

I know you will make the right decision for you and your cute little family. I wish you the best - I hate making tough decisions too!

southern daze said...

Wow! I really needed to hear these words today and am so thankful to you for sharing. I'm currently not working and find it hard to see myself as only a housewife (we don't have kids, although my stepdaughters visit sporadically throughout the year). I feel like those around me think less of me and I struggle to find things to justify my worth. I used to be a very career driven person and while I find I enjoy having time to focus on others (I volunteer weekly) sometimes I feel "less than" my friends. I'm constantly trying to feel worthy and that makes for a very insecure person. Doing more + having more doesn't equal a content + happy person. Thank you for reminding me of that!

Lucky in Love said...

This is amazing! Thank you so much for sharing. It spoke to me in so many ways. I am in a job I hate with everything I have...and it was just shouting at me from the computer, "Be content, Miss Jenny! You're lucky is so many way! God knows what he's doing!"

Thanks again!

Lis said...

Thank you so much for posting this. What a blessing this showed up in your inbox, because I definitely agree that is is a sign. I didn't comment on your last post but I did read it and I have been praying for you through this hard decision.
Since I'm not a Mom yet, I don't have great words of wisdom or anything but I can say you are not alone. The hubby and I are already having some serious budget talks to prepare for the little one. It's not an easy task to say the least!!
I hope that God leads you to an answer soon, as I know you are struggling with your decision.
I want you to know, I think you'd be an amazing stay at home mom! :) xoxo

cMe said...

It looks like God gave you a little bit of peace right there in that devotional! I hope you're eventually able to come to a prayerful decision..I know you will!

I also wanted to let you know I'm having a fun beauty giveaway on my blog this week. Stop by if you have a sec!

♥Aubrey said...

I hope you find your decision that you're searching for. I can say i've done both...and for my sanity and my kids i choose to work. I do however want to cut back my hours and go to part-time giving us more hours in the day to be together.

Them are so many ways to decide...many positives & negatives to weigh out. That which is best for you will be shown to you...i think you already know your decision though. What do you feel is best within your heart?

Pinot after Playdates said...

you will just KNOW what to do...i can't explain it any other way! Good Luck!

Lisa said...

I am new to your blog and I think your little girl is the cutest thing!! I have three daughters and I have been a SAHM for 20 years now! My two oldest daughters are in college and I am still as busy as ever. I know this is a personal decision based on so many emotional and financial things. You will have a period of adjustment either direction you go, but I do not think you will ever regret staying home with your children. It is difficult though, you will feel a little lost and disconnected sometimes, but at least what you give up is worth it. I have had a few part time jobs at preschools teaching and substituting while my children were students so maybe that would be an option for you too. My 20 year old hugged me while she was home on Christmas break and said, " I can't wait to have babies, stay home and be a mom just like you. You always made me feel so happy." That was worth more than any pay check I could have ever earned.

Good luck with the decision. Your daughter will feel loved no matter what, because you are a good mom.
Thanks for letting a complete stranger offer an opinion. God does speak to us doesn't he?

E.B. in Tennessee said...

Wow, I needed to read that! Thanks for sharing, and good luck with your decision :)