Do you struggle to embrace contentment? As mothers, (really, as humans) it’s so easy to let discouragement to creep into our thoughts and take root in our hearts. These thoughts will destroy our lives if we allow them to settle in and stay.
In my last post, I wrote about traveling to the Land of “If Only”, what I found there, and how I made the choice to leave. This metaphorical land of discontentment is a place we also visit from time to time, but some of us stay longer than we should.
When the dishes, diapers, unpaid bills, dirty clothes, grocery lists, and work schedules overwhelm our lives, it’s easy to wish for something better. Friends, there IS something better!
Here are 4 important ways to help us embrace contentment.
1. Choose to Embrace Contentment
Anytime you embark on a new change in your life, it involves an internal decision. Regardless of what is going on in your life, the Lord has you where He wants you for His glory. As humans, this can be tough to reconcile. But if we understand that the Lord uses our circumstances to mold and shape us for His glory, we can find rest. Allowing discontentment to creep in causes us to miss the blessings the Lord has for us in the present.
This personal commitment to contentment is daily action. The more you practice cultivating contentment, the more contentment fills your soul.
2. Dive Into The Word
Filling your days with God’s promises will enable you to make this daily commitment. Friend, if you struggle to achieve contentment, you are not alone. In fact, the apostle Paul wrote about his personal struggles with embracing contentment. Even the ones closest to Christ struggled with the same issues we do.
I’ve found that when I begin with a few verses each day and meditate on them, I find rest.
3. Practice A Servant’s Heart
Discontentment often comes from the desire for something we feel is better than what we currently have. Investing in other people helps squash this desire. When we dwell on what we can do for others rather than ourselves, discontentment struggles to thrive.
I often think of Jesus in John chapter 13 when He washes the disciples’ feet before the Passover feast. Jesus gives a beautiful example of a servant’s heart.
Perhaps you know of:
- Someone who needs a break for a few hours and you can watch their kids
- A family who’s been ill and would be refreshed with a meal
- A friend in need of your time and encouragement
- A neighbor needing a hand cleaning
Actively seek out needs in your community and plan to fill a few. You’ll be refreshed as much as they will. The more we pour into others, the more we’ll find refreshment for our souls.
4. Spend Time In Contemplation (Quiet Time)
Mommas, we work hard all day long and sometimes the night as well. Whether you work outside or inside the home, you do the work of many people just by being Mom. When we, as mothers, spend many hours each day pouring into our families and our jobs, we run out of energy. It’s vitally important that we take some time each day to refuel so we have that energy to give our families the best parts of us. What does that look like?
Every one of our days looks very different. No matter what is going on in your day, spend time in quiet. You can do this at times such as:
- Before the kids get up in the morning
- On your way to work
- While doing the dishes
- After the kids go to bed at night
Ultimately, when it comes to quiet time, you may even have to split up that time into chunks throughout the day. That’s okay! Do what works for you. It only needs to be a few minutes, not hours.
The important thing is that you take time to reflect on WHY you do what you do.
Reserving a time of quiet is NOT an opportunity for you to feel guilty about the task you’re putting on hold (i.e., dishes, laundry, etc.). This is a precious time to refuel so you can give your best “offerings” to others.
Remember, this is a process. When you take time to remember and think about everything you have and the goodness of it all, it’s easier to embrace contentment.